"kamala harris"
  • Considering Kamala Harris’s fitness to take over from Joe Biden should the need arise, a top aide to the former California senator’s 2020 campaign said: “This person should not be president of the United States.” [ The Rebels review: AOC, Bernie, Warren and the fight against Trump ](https://www.theguardian.com/books/2024/jan/14/rebels-review-aoc-bernie-warren-trump-joshua-green) The withering assessment, given after Harris was [picked](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2020/aug/11/kamala-harris-joe-biden-vp-running-mate-election-2020-vice-president#:~:text=Joe%20Biden%20picks%20Kamala%20Harris,US%20elections%202020%20%7C%20The%20Guardian) for vice-president in 2020, is reported in [The Truce](https://wwnorton.com/books/9781324020387): Progressives, Centrists and the Future of the Democratic Party, by the reporters Hunter Walker and Luppe B Luppen. The book will be published in the US [on 24 January 2024](https://bookshop.org/p/books/the-truce-progressives-centrists-and-the-future-of-the-democratic-party-hunter-walker/20074525). The Guardian obtained a copy. Harris ran for president in 2020, but [withdrew](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/dec/03/kamala-harris-drops-out-democratic-2020-presidential-race-reports) a month before the first vote. Her campaign, Walker and Luppen quote the unnamed aide as saying, was “rotten from the start. “A lot of us, at least folks that I was friends with on the campaign, all realised that: ‘Yeah, this person should not be president of the United States.” Another unnamed aide, identified as a “senior staffer”, is quoted as saying Harris’s backstory, as the child of Indian and Jamaican immigrants who became the first woman and woman of colour to be vice-president, is “a lot of the reason people support her. “But you’ve got to back that up with: ‘What are you going to do?’” In fact, Harris made a strong start to the Democratic primary in 2019, landing memorable blows on Biden [in the first debate](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/jun/27/second-democratic-debate-joe-biden-bernie-sanders) when she brought up the veteran senator and former vice-president’s historic opposition to “busing”, a way of compelling racial integration in public schools. “There was a little girl in California who was part of the second class to integrate her public schools,” Harris [said](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S6-UC8yr0Aw), onstage in Miami, “and she was bused to school every day, and that little girl was me.” Kamala Harris and Joe Biden debate in Miami in 2019. But Harris failed to capitalise with policy proposals or further profitable attacks and though Biden forgave her, overruling reported opposition among aides and [from his wife](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2022/mar/22/jill-biden-kamala-harris-runing-mate-vice-president-book) to pick Harris as his running mate, reports of tension and Harris’s frustrations as vice-president have been a feature of their time in power. The White House has repeatedly [denied](https://www.cnn.com/2021/11/15/politics/white-house-defends-harris/index.html) such reports concerning Biden and Harris’s working relationship and alleged [dysfunction](https://www.cnn.com/2021/07/02/politics/kamala-harris-office-dynamics/index.html) in Harris’s office. Biden and Harris are set to form the Democratic ticket again this year. [Polling](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2023/aug/28/biden-voters-age), however, shows widespread concern that at 81, Biden is too old to properly prosecute a potentially historic campaign, with Donald Trump seemingly set to be the Republican nominee once more. [skip past newsletter promotion](https://www.theguardian.com/books/2024/jan/14/kamala-harris-joe-biden-book-the-truce-hunter-walker-luppe-b-luppen#EmailSignup-skip-link-14) Sign up to First Thing Our US morning briefing breaks down the key stories of the day, telling you what’s happening and why it matters **Privacy Notice:** Newsletters may contain info about charities, online ads, and content funded by outside parties. For more information see our [Privacy Policy](https://www.theguardian.com/help/privacy-policy). We use Google reCaptcha to protect our website and the Google [Privacy Policy](https://policies.google.com/privacy) and [Terms of Service](https://policies.google.com/terms) apply. after newsletter promotion Polling also [shows](https://projects.fivethirtyeight.com/polls/approval/kamala-harris/) low approval numbers for Harris. Republicans, particularly Trump’s closest challenger, Nikki Haley, have made the prospect of her taking power a central campaign theme. Walker and Luppen report [speculation](https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/harris-buttigieg-democrats/2021/11/13/3215219c-4310-11ec-9ea7-3eb2406a2e24_story.html) that Harris could line up a 2028 bid on a ticket with Pete Buttigieg, the transportation secretary who won the Iowa caucuses in 2020. A former Buttigieg staffer is quoted as saying Harris has established “a personal relationship with Pete in a way that she doesn’t with other people”. But alleged people problems, familiar from reports about Harris’s campaign and her time as vice-president, also surface in Walker and Luppen’s book. “The problems Harris and her team had experienced on her campaign had persisted during her time as vice-president,” the authors write. “Harris saw heavy staff turnover, with aides describing a toxic climate riven with factionalism and mismanagement. One source who worked for the vice-president declined to go on record or even discuss matters anonymously, due to the heated atmosphere around the office. “They refused to characterise the experience of working for Harris, apart from offering a three-word assessment. It was, they said: ‘Game of Thrones’.”
  • For decades, ambitious politicians with eyes on a future presidential run made pilgrimages to Iowa and New Hampshire, casually popping in at fairs and local fund-raising dinners as if they just happened to be in the area. When President Biden [pushed Democrats to place South Carolina first](https://www.nytimes.com/2022/12/01/us/politics/biden-dnc-primary-south-carolina-2024.html) on their presidential primary calendar, the geography for the party’s political strivers changed. They are now working to build support not in mostly white Northern places but in a Southern state with a predominantly Black primary voting base that better represents the modern Democratic Party. So when Vice President Kamala Harris [arrived on Friday in Orangeburg, S.C.](https://www.nytimes.com/2024/02/02/us/politics/kamala-harris-south-carolina.html), for her ninth visit to South Carolina since taking office, she came as a known quantity. While she and Mr. Biden are running for renomination without serious challengers, the relationships she has developed in the state are expected to play a part in lifting their ticket to a comfortable triumph on Saturday in the party’s first recognized primary election. Ms. Harris’s trip, as well as an ongoing college tour to defend abortion rights and promote the Democratic agenda, also served two larger purposes: working to shore up Mr. Biden’s lingering vulnerabilities with Black voters and young voters, and keeping [the first woman and first woman of color](https://www.nytimes.com/2020/11/07/us/politics/kamala-harris.html) to serve as vice president at the forefront for the next presidential contest in 2028. Perhaps the most influential Democrat in South Carolina is already on board with Ms. Harris as a future White House candidate. “I made very clear months ago that I support her,” said Representative James E. Clyburn, whose 2020 endorsement of Mr. Biden before his state’s primary election helped rejuvenate the former vice president’s struggling campaign and carry him to the nomination. “That’s why we got to re-elect the ticket. Then you talk about viability after that.” Thank you for your patience while we verify access. If you are in Reader mode please exit and [log into](https://myaccount.nytimes.com/auth/login?response_type=cookie&client_id=vi&redirect_uri=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2024%2F02%2F03%2Fus%2Fpolitics%2Fkamala-harris-biden-south-carolina-primary.html&asset=opttrunc) your Times account, or [subscribe](https://www.nytimes.com/subscription?campaignId=89WYR&redirect_uri=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2024%2F02%2F03%2Fus%2Fpolitics%2Fkamala-harris-biden-south-carolina-primary.html) for all of The Times. Thank you for your patience while we verify access. Already a subscriber? [Log in](https://myaccount.nytimes.com/auth/login?response_type=cookie&client_id=vi&redirect_uri=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2024%2F02%2F03%2Fus%2Fpolitics%2Fkamala-harris-biden-south-carolina-primary.html&asset=opttrunc). Want all of The Times? [Subscribe](https://www.nytimes.com/subscription?campaignId=89WYR&redirect_uri=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2024%2F02%2F03%2Fus%2Fpolitics%2Fkamala-harris-biden-south-carolina-primary.html).
  • Joe Biden’s closing argument on Friday to South Carolina, the state that [rescued his White House dreams](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2022/dec/27/jim-clyburn-biden-south-carolina-congressman-interview) four years ago, was not made by Joe Biden. Instead it was Kamala Harris who strode out under a brilliant blue sky to the thunderous cadence of South Carolina State University’s drumline. [ South Carolina Democratic primary 2024: track live results ](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2024/feb/03/south-carolina-democratic-primary-results-live-tracker-2024-biden-phillips-williamson) It was because South Carolina’s voters showed up in the middle of a historic pandemic that Biden became president, she told a modest but enthusiastic crowd in Orangeburg, “and I am the first woman and first Black woman to be vice-president of the United States”. Harris was making her final pitch on the eve of the official kick-off of the Democratic presidential primary. At Biden’s behest, the Democratic National Committee (DNC) altered the electoral calendar so that racially diverse South Carolina [holds the first nominating contest](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2024/jan/28/biden-in-south-carolina-for-one-of-his-first-presidential-election-campaign-appearances-of-2024) instead of Iowa and New Hampshire, which are about 90% white. It could not be described as a cliffhanger. Biden is assured of victory in the state that revived his seemingly doomed campaign in 2020. That formality was underlined by [his write-in win](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2024/jan/23/democrat-candidates-biden-ballot-new-hampshire-primary) in last month’s unsanctioned New Hampshire primary when his name did not even appear on the ballot. But Democrats are still working for a strong turnout to validate both Biden and South Carolina’s elevated status. Biden did visit the Palmetto state last weekend but it was Harris who came to Orangeburg on Friday, [meeting faith leaders](https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefing-room/statements-releases/2024/02/02/readout-from-vice-president-kamala-harriss-convening-of-faith-leaders-in-south-carolina/) to discuss issues such as gun violence, prescription drug prices, student debt forgiveness and national unity. She then spoke in a balmy open-air courtyard at South Carolina’s only public historically black college and university (HBCU). The trip signalled that, despite a tenure clouded by [negative headlines](https://www.theguardian.com/books/2024/jan/14/kamala-harris-joe-biden-book-the-truce-hunter-walker-luppe-b-luppen) and approval rating that often lags behind Biden’s, Harris remains critical to the president’s re-election campaign because of her ability to galvanise Black voters and her sharp messaging on abortion rights, a potentially decisive issue. Many Democrats regard her as an asset rather than a liability. ![People cheer as Kamala Harris arrives to speak at South Carolina State University in Orangeburg during a campaign event on 2 February.](https://i.guim.co.uk/img/media/7598f16f8eb777e53f06112fd67fdde58b07bb2e/0_0_8256_5504/master/8256.jpg?width=445&dpr=1&s=none)[](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2024/feb/03/kamala-harris-south-carolina-primary-biden-democrats#img-2) People cheer as Kamala Harris arrives to speak at South Carolina State University in Orangeburg during a campaign event on 2 February. Photograph: Jim Watson/AFP/Getty Images The 59-year-old can also expect closer scrutiny than past vice-presidents because her boss is 81, the oldest commander-in-chief in American history. On Friday Nikki Haley, a former South Carolina governor [battling Donald Trump](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2024/feb/01/donald-trump-nikki-haley-dropping-out-republican) for the Republican nomination, set up a mobile billboard at the edge of the university campus that said: “We’re going to have a woman president. It will either be Nikki Haley, or it will be Kamala Harris. Trump can’t beat Biden, and Biden won’t finish his term.” Harris spoke against the backdrop of a giant blue banner that said “First in the nation”, and checked off administration accomplishments such as job creation, increasing access to high-speed internet in rural areas, cancelling billions in student loan debt and capping insulin costs. But she became most animated when discussing reproductive freedom in the aftermath of the supreme court’s decision to end the constitutional right to abortion. And just as Biden has begun using the name “Trump” frequently as he increasingly draws a contrast, Harris did not shy away from [attacking the likely Republican nominee](https://www.c-span.org/video/?c5105030/vice-president-harris-administrations-accomplishments-criticism-president-trump) as a profound threat to democracy. “He openly says that he is ‘proud’ that he overturned Roe v Wade,” Harris said. “‘Proud’ that he took the freedom of choice from millions of American women. For years the former president has stoked the fires of hate and bigotry and racism and xenophobia for his own power and political gain.” There were cries of “Yes!” from the audience. Harris went on: “He accused immigrants of ‘poisoning the blood of our country’ and, after neo-Nazis marched in Charlottesville, he said there were ‘very fine people on both sides’. The former president openly talks about his admiration for dictators and has vowed that he will be a dictator on day one.” Harris went on to summarise the threat of Trump’s authoritarianism in stark terms: “Understand what dictators do. Dictators put journalists in jail. Dictators suspend elections. Dictators take your rights and, as the great Maya Angelou once said, ‘When someone tells you who they are, believe them the first time.’” The speech, lasting only 14 minutes, struck a chord with Black women young and old. Morgan Mack, 22, a student at the university, said: “She was amazing and she hit on some good points that are going to affect my generation the most, so we just need to go out there and vote.” Mack added: “She’s definitely an asset to [Joe Biden](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/joebiden) and an asset to not just Black women, but women everywhere and HBCU students like myself.” Laura Keith, a teacher who gave her age only as “old”, said Harris has done an “excellent job” as vice-president. “Very intelligent, expresses herself well, stepping out there among the people, speaking to people and giving them a vision of this administration.” [skip past newsletter promotion](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2024/feb/03/kamala-harris-south-carolina-primary-biden-democrats#EmailSignup-skip-link-18) Sign up to First Thing Our US morning briefing breaks down the key stories of the day, telling you what’s happening and why it matters **Privacy Notice:** Newsletters may contain info about charities, online ads, and content funded by outside parties. For more information see our [Privacy Policy](https://www.theguardian.com/help/privacy-policy). We use Google reCaptcha to protect our website and the Google [Privacy Policy](https://policies.google.com/privacy) and [Terms of Service](https://policies.google.com/terms) apply. after newsletter promotion > She’s inspiring people, the boys, the girls, whatever colour, that you can choose to do what you want to do Shane McCravy Other spectators were similarly positive about Harris’s contribution. Shane McCravy, 23, a screenwriter, said: “She helps keep him in touch with just the minorities. She offers a voice, especially as a Black woman, not just for minority groups but she’s an inspiration for the next generation. “She’s inspiring people, the boys, the girls, whatever colour, that you can choose to do what you want to do and this helps get through that message America is for everyone, no matter who you are._”_ Pastor William Johnson, 64, added: “She’s part of the plan. We started out three years ago and this is just a continuation of not just making America great but bringing America back. Saving the soul of America._”_ Harris, herself a graduate of an HBCU – Howard University in Washington – served as the junior senator from California from 2017 to 2021. Her own campaign for president collapsed two months before the first contest but she was chosen by Biden as running mate. Critics mock her speeches as “word salads” and question her management style; defenders say she has been the victims of racism, sexism and the thanklessness of the vice-presidency. [Antjuan Seawright](https://twitter.com/antjuansea?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Eauthor), a Democratic strategist based in South Carolina, insisted: “She brings the experience of being a Black woman in America who knows what it’s like to be counted out and knows what it’s like to be at the bottom when you know you have the ability to lead at the top.” Biden and Harris are also boosted by a strong economy including news that the US added 353,000 jobs in January, smashing expectations. A Quinnipiac University national poll this week found [Biden with 50% support](https://poll.qu.edu/poll-release?releaseid=3889) among registered voters, ahead of Trump on 44%. Yet the president faces discontent over inflation, a border crisis and his handling of the war in Gaza. ![Actor Sophia Bush and Harris speak during a conversation as part of Harris’s ‘Fight for Reproductive Freedoms’ tour in San Jose, California, on 29 January.](https://i.guim.co.uk/img/media/3fbca2a561dadf267e320286a32b91911ced8a56/0_0_5324_3550/master/5324.jpg?width=445&dpr=1&s=none)[](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2024/feb/03/kamala-harris-south-carolina-primary-biden-democrats#img-3) Actor Sophia Bush and Harris speak during a conversation as part of Harris’s ‘Fight for Reproductive Freedoms’ tour in San Jose, California, on 29 January. Photograph: John G Mabanglo/EPA Saturday’s turnout may offer some clues, although it is bound to lower in a year when an incumbent president is running without serious challengers (in 2012, President Barack Obama gained 866,000 votes in the primary here). Biden’s challengers [Dean Phillips](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2022/jan/06/capitol-attack-democrat-dean-phillips-recalls-horror-fury) and Marianne Williamson are not expected to make much impact. Seawright, a Democratic strategist based in South Carolina, said: “People feel proud to be a South Carolinian, the fact that we’re first in a nation. People feel grateful and thankful to President Biden for having the steel spine and the political will and courage to recommend South Carolina going first. “People understand the need and the urgency to display their support and unity around President Biden and Vice-President Harris, because we know that this fight ahead will be a lot different than the fight behind.” [Elaine Kamarck](https://www.brookings.edu/people/elaine-kamarck/), who as a member of the DNC voted for South Carolina to go first, thinks this year’s result will have little meaning but that will not be the case next time around. She said: “They are the most loyal base in the party and they ought to have the first say. It’s not going to be a big deal this time but in 2028 it’ll be a very big deal.”
  • 美国/政治/国际 2月3日,美国总统拜登(Joe Biden)赢得了南卡罗来纳州的民主党初选,在这个四年前将他推上白宫宝座的州取得了压倒性的2024年胜利。拜登在周六击败了南卡州选票上其他几位胜算渺茫的民主党人,包括明尼苏达州众议员菲利普斯(Dean Phillips)和女作家威廉姆森(Marianne Williamson) ... 发表时间: 04/02/2024 - 01:46更改时间: 04/02/2024 - 01:50 6 分钟 ![2月3日,美国总统乔·拜登在特拉华州威尔明顿的竞选总部发表讲话。](https://s.rfi.fr/media/display/0d8d2cea-c2f5-11ee-a8ed-005056bf30b7/w:980/p:16x9/AP24034614335405.jpg) 2月3日,美国总统乔·拜登在特拉华州威尔明顿的竞选总部发表讲话
  • White House officials and prominent Democrats today attacked the special counsel’s report into President Biden’s handling of classified material by [labeling it politically motivated](https://www.nytimes.com/2024/02/09/us/politics/kamala-harris-biden-special-counsel.html). The comments were part of an effort to discredit a document that characterized the president as elderly and forgetful. Vice President Kamala Harris and multiple House Democrats depicted the report, which legally exonerated Biden, as more of a political attack than an unbiased legal document. A spokesman for the White House Counsel’s Office suggested that the special counsel, Robert Hur, violated Justice Department policy. The report cast Biden, 81, as a “well-meaning, elderly man with a poor memory” with “diminished faculties in advancing age.” It placed his age — [an uncomfortable subject looming over his re-election bid](https://www.nytimes.com/2024/02/09/upshot/biden-age-presidency.html) — back at the center of America’s political conversation. Hur, who worked in the Trump administration, has not responded to the criticism. President Vladimir Putin spoke with Tucker Carlson at the Kremlin, on Tuesday.Credit...Pool photo by Gavriil Grigorov/EPA via Shutterstock In a two-hour interview this week with the former Fox News host Tucker Carlson, President Vladimir Putin insisted that he was interested in negotiating a peace deal in Ukraine. But [U.S. officials are deeply skeptical](https://www.nytimes.com/2024/02/09/us/politics/biden-putin-tucker-carlson-peace.html). Thank you for your patience while we verify access. If you are in Reader mode please exit and [log into](https://myaccount.nytimes.com/auth/login?response_type=cookie&client_id=vi&redirect_uri=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2024%2F02%2F09%2Fbriefing%2Fwhite-house-special-counsel-report-putin-interview.html&asset=opttrunc) your Times account, or [subscribe](https://www.nytimes.com/subscription?campaignId=89WYR&redirect_uri=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2024%2F02%2F09%2Fbriefing%2Fwhite-house-special-counsel-report-putin-interview.html) for all of The Times. Thank you for your patience while we verify access. Already a subscriber? [Log in](https://myaccount.nytimes.com/auth/login?response_type=cookie&client_id=vi&redirect_uri=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2024%2F02%2F09%2Fbriefing%2Fwhite-house-special-counsel-report-putin-interview.html&asset=opttrunc). Want all of The Times? [Subscribe](https://www.nytimes.com/subscription?campaignId=89WYR&redirect_uri=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2024%2F02%2F09%2Fbriefing%2Fwhite-house-special-counsel-report-putin-interview.html).
  • As Air Force Two taxied for takeoff bound for Germany, Vice President Kamala Harris made her way through the plane handing out heart-shaped Valentine’s Day cookies. It was good practice for her trip to the Munich Security Conference, where her mission will be to reassure European allies that America still loves them. Arriving in Munich even as [House Republicans block military aid](https://www.nytimes.com/2024/02/13/us/politics/ukraine-aid-bill-house.html) to Ukraine and former President Donald J. Trump vows to encourage Russia to attack “delinquent” NATO allies, Ms. Harris has the unenviable task of telling European leaders not to worry too much about those things. And she faces the challenge of making the case that Mr. Trump and his backers are wrong about the value of alliances. While the meetings she and Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken will have in Munich will be aimed at calming European leaders, the speech she will deliver to the conference on Friday will be aimed as much at the American audience back home. Without mentioning Mr. Trump by name, officials said, she plans to use the platform to forcefully rebut the former president who is aiming to reclaim his old job, arguing that international partnerships are critical to American security, not a burden to be lightly discarded. It will also be a chance for her to prove herself on the world stage in an election year in which her running mate, President Biden, faces questions about his age. While no one in the White House would say this too openly, Ms. Harris’s challenge in the campaign is to demonstrate that she is up to the job so that voters will not worry about re-electing an 81-year-old president who would be 86 at the end of a second term. “I am ready to serve. There’s no question about that,” Ms. Harris [told The Wall Street Journal](https://www.wsj.com/politics/elections/kamala-harris-says-she-is-ready-to-serve-as-biden-faces-age-scrutiny-8f39c442) in an interview published this week. Anyone who interacts with her, she said, “walks away fully aware of my capacity to lead.” Munich has been a favored platform for Ms. Harris to try to showcase that for years. In 2022, she spoke just days before Russia invaded Ukraine, calling it a [“defining moment”](https://www.nytimes.com/2022/02/19/world/europe/kamala-harris-ukraine-russia.html) for the world. Last year, she used the conference to accuse Russia of [“crimes against humanity”](https://www.nytimes.com/2023/02/18/world/europe/chinese-official-us-balloon-response-ukraine-war.html) in Ukraine, raising the diplomatic stakes of the war. Thank you for your patience while we verify access. If you are in Reader mode please exit and [log into](https://myaccount.nytimes.com/auth/login?response_type=cookie&client_id=vi&redirect_uri=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2024%2F02%2F15%2Fus%2Fpolitics%2Fkamala-harris-munich.html&asset=opttrunc) your Times account, or [subscribe](https://www.nytimes.com/subscription?campaignId=89WYR&redirect_uri=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2024%2F02%2F15%2Fus%2Fpolitics%2Fkamala-harris-munich.html) for all of The Times. Thank you for your patience while we verify access. Already a subscriber? [Log in](https://myaccount.nytimes.com/auth/login?response_type=cookie&client_id=vi&redirect_uri=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2024%2F02%2F15%2Fus%2Fpolitics%2Fkamala-harris-munich.html&asset=opttrunc). Want all of The Times? [Subscribe](https://www.nytimes.com/subscription?campaignId=89WYR&redirect_uri=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2024%2F02%2F15%2Fus%2Fpolitics%2Fkamala-harris-munich.html).
  • ![](https://media.npr.org/assets/img/2024/02/16/ap24044249844624_custom-9f66e815da77b24792276d85c893564bff29cf85-s1100-c50.jpg) ![](https://media.npr.org/assets/img/2024/02/16/ap24044249844624_custom-9f66e815da77b24792276d85c893564bff29cf85-s1200.jpg) Republican presidential candidate former UN Ambassador Nikki Haley speaks to members of the media during a campaign event at Thunder Tower Harley Davidson Monday, Feb. 12 in Elgin, S.C. On the campaign trail, Haley has stepped up attacks against Vice President Kamala Harris, drawing parallels between herself and the vice president. Sean Rayford/AP Republican presidential hopeful Nikki Haley has been highlighting concerns about President Biden's [age and mental acuity](https://www.npr.org/2024/02/10/1230594530/biden-special-counsel-report-classified-documents-comey-clinton-2016) on the campaign trail, and using them as a launching point for attacks on Vice President Kamala Harris. "It's either gonna be me, or it's gonna be Kamala Harris," Haley warned while campaigning in Orangeburg, S.C. last weekend. "Do we really want to have a country in disarray, and a world on fire, and have two 80-year-olds as our candidates?" Haley asked the crowd, as she campaigned ahead of South Carolina's [Republican primary](https://www.npr.org/2024/02/13/1231061464/first-in-the-south-gop-presidential-primary-is-later-this-month-in-south-carolin) on Feb. 24. The idea that she represents a new generation of leadership has been a major theme of her campaign. Haley has been focusing many of her attacks on both Biden, 81, and former President Trump, 77, pointing out [their ages](https://www.npr.org/2024/02/12/1230987858/aging-memory-and-the-presidency) and [recent lapses](https://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2024/02/14/1231139957/gaffes-biden-trump-aging-presidency-normal-cognition-not-dementia-alzheimers). In Orangeburg, Haley referred to last week's [special counsel report](https://www.npr.org/2024/02/08/1229805332/special-counsel-report-biden-classified-documents), which questioned Biden's memory. "I wish him well. I do. But this is serious," Haley said. "And we need to be very cautious of what's happening, because Russia, China and Iran are paying attention to every bit of this." ![](https://media.npr.org/assets/img/2024/02/16/ap24037855713462-48f42cd986c1cdfe98478f76c1bba2e87b5e5779-s1100-c50.jpg) ![](https://media.npr.org/assets/img/2024/02/16/ap24037855713462-48f42cd986c1cdfe98478f76c1bba2e87b5e5779-s1200.jpg) President Biden, holds hands with Vice President Kamala Harris as he speaks at a reception in recognition of Black History Month in the East Room of the White House in Washington, Tuesday, Feb. 6. Andrew Harnik/AP And then, Haley made a bold — and unsubstantiated — claim. "My bet is 30 days from now, I don't think Joe Biden's gonna be the nominee," Haley predicted. "You're gonna have a female president of the United States." To be clear, Biden is almost certain to be the Democratic nominee. Haley provided no evidence for her speculation that he will step aside — nor for the suggestion that Harris is poised to step in anytime soon. Asked about Haley's prediction by NPR's Tamara Keith during a White House press briefing on Thursday, White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre she had to be cautious about commenting on the campaign as a federal employee. "The president is, obviously, you know his intentions for 2024," Jean-Pierre said. As for Haley: "I'm not sure what crystal ball she's looking at, but it's not the one we have," Jean-Pierre added. It's a theme Haley has brought up repeatedly in recent months, warning Republican audiences about the prospect of Harris stepping in. In January, campaigning in Conway, S.C., Haley said the thought of a Harris presidency "should send a chill up every person's spine." By doing so, Haley is highlighting Biden's age and Harris' high disapproval ratings among Republican primary voters, says Ange-Marie Hancock, a political scientist at Ohio State University. "Republican primary voters are primed with negative views of Kamala Harris," explained Hancock, who's also the curator of the Kamala Harris Project, a group of scholars studying Harris' vice presidency. Hancock points to what she calls a "drumbeat" of attacks on Harris in right-wing circles, including [Trump's use](https://www.npr.org/2020/08/15/902756963/trumps-attacks-on-harris-are-a-return-to-familiar-territory) of racist birther theories to falsely suggest Harris may not be eligible to be vice president. Trump has directed [similar false attacks](https://www.npr.org/2024/01/23/1226406644/trump-is-spreading-birtherism-falsehoods-again-this-time-about-nikki-haley) at Haley. Hancock says Haley appears to be drawing on those themes as she campaigns for Republican primary votes. "So she's using dog whistles to counteract some dog whistles that may be levied against her," Hancock said. That strategy appears unlikely to work for Haley, who's [been polling far behind](https://www.southcarolinapublicradio.org/sc-news/2024-02-16/trump-leads-haley-by-large-margin-in-inaugural-citadel-poll) Trump in [her home state](https://www.npr.org/2024/01/24/1226752718/nikki-haley-donald-trump-south-carolina-new-hampshire-primary). But Hancock says it may offer a preview of the kinds of general election messages that Trump and other Republicans will be using against Biden and Harris in the months to come. A Haley campaign spokeswoman noted in a statement to NPR that Harris has been tasked with the administration's border security policy and said, "It's not surprising that she is viewed even more unfavorably \[than\] Joe Biden."
  • [Kamala Harris](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/kamala-harris) on Saturday criticized Donald Trump’s cajoling of Russia to [attack Nato allies](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2024/feb/11/donald-trump-says-he-would-encourage-russia-to-attack-nato-countries-who-dont-pay-bills) of the US who don’t pay their dues, saying the American people would never accept a president who bowed to a dictator. The vice-president’s comments, in a wide-ranging interview on MSNBC’s The Weekend, represent some of the strongest criticism to date of Trump’s apparent allegiance to Russian president [Vladimir Putin](https://www.theguardian.com/world/vladimir-putin). The Joe Biden White House has previously called the remarks by the [frontrunner for the Republican presidential nomination](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/donaldtrump) – made last week at a campaign rally in Pennsylvania – “appalling and unhinged”. “The idea that the former president of the US would say that he – quote – encourages a brutal dictator to invade our allies, and that the United States of America would simply stand by and watch,” Harris said. “No previous US president, regardless of their party, has bowed down to a Russian dictator before. “We are seeing an example of something I just believe that the American people would never support, which is a US president, current or former, bowing down with those kinds of words, and apparently an intention of conduct, to a Russian dictator.” Harris, who was interviewed in Germany, where she is attending the Munich Security Conference, also attacked House Republicans who are stalling the [Biden](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/joebiden) administration’s $95bn foreign military aid package. The bill includes money for Ukraine’s defense against the Russian invasion. But it has been disconnected from US border security measures that Republicans insisted they wanted – [then voted down](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2024/feb/07/us-senate-vote-bipartisan-border-bill). “We need to do our part \[to support Ukraine\], and we have been very clear that Congress must act,” she said. “I think all members of Congress, and all elected leaders, would understand this is a moment where America has the ability to demonstrate through action where we stand on issues like this, which is, do we stand with our friends in the face of extreme brutality or not?” She said she was confident the $95bn Ukraine and Israel package, which [passed the Senate](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2024/feb/12/senate-procedural-vote-ukraine-israel-aid) on Monday on a 66-33 vote, would also win bipartisan support in the Republican-controlled House. So far, however, Republican speaker Mike Johnson has refused to allow a vote, and the chamber is in recess. “One point that gives me some level of optimism is we are clear in the knowledge that there is bipartisan support, both in the Senate, which we’ve seen a demonstration of, and the House,” she said. “So let’s put this to a vote in the House, and I’m certain that it will pass. We are working to that end, and we’re not giving up.” Harris was also questioned about Biden’s [increasingly tougher approach](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2024/feb/14/biden-netanyahu-israel-gaza-advice) to Israel’s prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, with the president warning this week against an escalation of the military onslaught in Rafah without a safety plan for up to 1.5 million trapped Palestinian civilians. “We have been clear that we defend Israel’s right to defend itself. However, how it does so matters,” she said. “Far too many Palestinians, innocent Palestinian civilians, have been killed. Israel \[needs to take\] concrete steps to protect innocent Palestinians.” But she refused to say whether the US would restrict or halt weapons supplies to Israel if Netanyahu ignored Biden’s urging and pressed ahead with operations in Rafah without civilian safety rails. “We have not made any decision to do that at this point, but I will tell you that I am very concerned that there are as many as 1.5 million people in Rafah who for the most part are people who have been displaced because they fled their homes, thinking they would be in a place of safety,” she said. “I’m very concerned about where they would go and what they would do.”
  • Vice-president Kamala Harris said Joe Biden's administration stood ready to support Ukraine for 'as long as it takes' and would push for Russia to pay damages to Ukraine when the war ends. 'We will continue in our efforts to secure a just and lasting peace. We will work to make sure Russia pays damages to Ukraine,' she said at a joint news conference with Ukraine's president, Volodymyr Zelenskiy, at the annual Munich Security Conference on Saturday. Her comments come as the US political world battles over how and whether to stand up to Russia, particularly after Washington has approved more than $110bn in defence assistance for Ukraine, and Biden's request for another $60bn for Kyiv is stalled in the US Congress
  • Vice President Kamala Harris plans to return to the swing state of Wisconsin next week for an event touting worker apprenticeship programs February 29, 2024, 12:46 PM MADISON, Wis. -- Vice President Kamala Harris plans to return to the swing state of [Wisconsin](https://abcnews.go.com/alerts/WisconsinProtests) next week for an event touting worker apprenticeship programs, the White House announced Thursday. The visit to Madison will mark her sixth trip to Wisconsin as vice president and her second this year. She was in Waukesha in January for an abortion rights rally. Wisconsin is one of just a handful of battleground states in the presidential [election](https://abcnews.go.com/alerts/Elections). President [Joe Biden](https://abcnews.go.com/alerts/JoeBiden) won the state in 2020 by less than 1 percentage point and both sides are making it a target again this year. The White House said Harris will highlight the Biden administration's commitment to registered apprenticeship programs and creating high-paying union jobs. Harris will be joined by Secretary of Labor Julie Su. Last year, Biden visited a union training site near Madison. He has made eight trips to Wisconsin as president. ![ABC News](data:image/gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAIAAAAAAAP///yH5BAEAAAAALAAAAAABAAEAAAIBRAA7) [ ![](https://s.abcnews.com/images/GMA/princess-kate-gty-jef-240229_1709215117878_hpMain_1x1_144.jpg) ](https://abcnews.go.com/GMA/Culture/kate-middleton-health-latest/story?id=107675286) [ ![](https://s.abcnews.com/images/Sports/wirestory_6504d307ab00daf4a4db4638bfaed632_1x1_144.jpg) ](https://abcnews.go.com/Sports/wireStory/stacy-wakefield-dies-5-months-after-husband-world-107650817) [ ![](https://s.abcnews.com/images/US/Teixeira-1-gty-er-240229_1709242563323_hpMain_1x1_144.jpg) ](https://abcnews.go.com/US/pentagon-leaker-jack-teixiera-plead-guilty-sources/story?id=107694718) [ ![](https://s.abcnews.com/images/Politics/trump-gala_1708776519268_hpMain_1x1_144.jpg) ](https://abcnews.go.com/Politics/trump-returns-border-closer-pledging-immigration-elected/story?id=107639755) [ ![](https://s.abcnews.com/images/US/trump2-gty-ml-240228_1709134106555_hpMain_1x1_144.jpg) ](https://abcnews.go.com/US/trump-plans-post-100-million-bond-asks-stay/story?id=107634579)
  • ![A woman cries amid the rubble following what local officials say were Israeli strikes at the Rafah refugee camp, southern Gaza Strip. Photo: 3 March 2024](https://ichef.bbci.co.uk/news/976/cpsprodpb/A5FC/production/_132829424_084f96e80b1364c94acb4a13b1949a56b1047654-1.jpg)Image source, EPA-EFE/REX/Shutterstock Image caption, The fighting has reduced much of Gaza to rubble and many of the victims were women and children **US Vice-President Kamala Harris says people in Gaza "are starving" and has urged Israel to "significantly increase the flow of aid" there.** She said "there must be an immediate ceasefire for at least the next six weeks", which would "get the \[Israeli\] hostages out". Earlier, Israel did not attend truce talks in Egypt, saying Hamas was not giving a list of hostages still alive. Hamas told the BBC it was unable to do so because of the Israeli bombing. "Practically it is impossible to know who is still alive," said Dr Basem Naim, a senior Hamas official. Hamas's team and mediators from the US and Qatar are understood to be in Egypt's capital Cairo for the planned negotiations. Pressure for a ceasefire deal intensified after Thursday's incident outside Gaza City in the north of the Palestinian enclave where at least 112 people were killed when crowds rushed an aid convoy and Israeli troops opened fire. Speaking at an event in Alabama on Sunday, Ms Harris said: "What we are seeing every day in Gaza is devastating. We have seen reports of families eating leaves or animal feed, women giving birth to malnourished babies with little or no medical care, and children dying from malnutrition and dehydration. "As I have said many times, too many innocent Palestinians have been killed." Image caption, Kamala Harris spoke at an event in Alabama to honour US civil rights protesters The vice-president stressed that "our common humanity compels us to act", reiterating President Joe Biden's commitment "to urgently get more life-saving assistance to innocent Palestinians in need". On Monday Ms Harris is due to have talks in Washington with Benny Gantz, an influential member of Israel's war cabinet, to discuss a possible ceasefire deal and increased humanitarian aid for Gaza. Ms Harris said "there is a deal on the table and as we have said, Hamas needs to agree to that deal. Let's get a ceasefire. Let's reunite the hostages with their families, and let's provide immediate relief to the people of Gaza." She also said "the Israeli government must do more to significantly increase the flow of aid. No excuses." She was speaking in Selma, Alabama, at an event marking the 1965 attack by state troopers on civil rights demonstrators, known as Bloody Sunday. The Israeli military launched a large-scale air and ground campaign to destroy Hamas after its gunmen killed about 1,200 people in southern Israel on 7 October and took 253 back to Gaza as hostages. Gaza's Hamas-run health ministry says at least 30,410 people, including 21,000 children and women, have been killed in Gaza since then, with some 7,000 missing and 71,700 injured. Media caption, Watch: Devastation after dozens killed in Gaza aid operation Dr Basem Naim, a member of Hamas's political bureau, told the BBC's Newshour programme on Sunday that the group was unable to provide Israel with a full list of surviving hostages. "Practically it is impossible to know who is still alive because of the Israeli bombardment and blockage. They are in different areas with different groups. "We have asked for a ceasefire to collect that data", he said, adding: "we cannot accept any preconditions". He was speaking from Istanbul. The UK, US and their Western partners consider Iranian-backed Hamas to be a terrorist organisation. * [Israel-Gaza war](/news/topics/c2vdnvdg6xxt) * [Israel](/news/topics/c302m85q5ljt) * [Kamala Harris](/news/topics/c34k011x7rrt) * [Alabama](/news/topics/cmj34zmwx3jt) * [United States](/news/topics/cx1m7zg01xyt) * [Humanitarian aid](/news/topics/cyqpkren475t)
  • Show key events only Please turn on JavaScript to use this feature **A 16-year-old boy has been shot and killed by Israeli security forces during an overnight raid in the al-Amari camp in the Israeli-occupied West Bank city of Ramallah, according to reports.** The Palestinian Authority ministry of health said the killing of Mustafa Abu Shalbak happened in the early morning hours. Shalbak was wounded in the neck and chest, and pronounced dead in hospital. Palestinian news agency Wafa reports that Isreali forces fired live ammunition during a confrontation after they entered the camp. ![Israeli troops raid the Al-Amari refugee camp near Ramallah, in the Israeli-occupied West Bank, on 4 March.](https://i.guim.co.uk/img/media/b65643659f7c9b07ab646b04f3de37047e3fb718/0_0_8256_5504/master/8256.jpg?width=465&dpr=1&s=none) Israeli troops raid the Al-Amari refugee camp near Ramallah, in the Israeli-occupied West Bank, on 4 March. Photograph: Jaafar Ashtiyeh/AFP/Getty Images A crowd has carried Shalbak’s body through Ramallah today ahead of his burial. Palestinian news agency Wafa also reports that 55 Palestinians were detained overnight by Israeli security forces operating in the Israeli-occupied West Bank. 22 people were detained, it said, in Hebron, with other detentions taking place in Tubas, Bethlehem, Qalqilya, and East Jerusalem. The Palestinian Prisoner’s Society states that about 7,400 Palestinians have now been detained by Israel since 7 October. [Share](mailto:?subject=Middle%20East%20crisis%20live:%2016-year-old%20boy%20reportedly%20killed%20during%20Israeli%20raid%20near%20Ramallah&body=https://www.theguardian.com/world/live/2024/mar/04/middle-east-crisis-live-israel-gaza-kamala-harris-ceasefire-latest-news?page=with%3Ablock-65e5a2d68f083e1fa9bcf3b7#block-65e5a2d68f083e1fa9bcf3b7) Show key events only Please turn on JavaScript to use this feature **Mohammad Shtayyeh**, caretaker prime minister of the Palestinian Authority since his [government resigned en masse last week](https://www.theguardian.com/world/video/2024/feb/26/palestinian-prime-minister-mohammad-shtayyeh-and-his-government-resign-over-gaza-genocide-video), has accused Israel of “systematic criminality” and said countries that support Israel should “feel ashamed”. Speaking at the opening of a caretaker government meeting in Israeli-occupied Ramallah, Palestinian news agency Wafa quotes Shtayyeh saying: > Israel must allow the residents of the northern Gaza Strip to return to their homes, allow international institutions to work throughout the Gaza Strip, especially in the north, and allow aid to be delivered through United Nations institutions and relevant parties. > > Those being killed in Gaza are not numbers but children, and the countries that support Israel and deal with it must feel ashamed of its positions. What does withholding milk from infants mean other than exposing them to starvation? > > The Israeli government is nothing but a group of killers that practices systematic criminality, murder, and revenge. [Share](mailto:?subject=Middle%20East%20crisis%20live:%2016-year-old%20boy%20reportedly%20killed%20during%20Israeli%20raid%20near%20Ramallah&body=https://www.theguardian.com/world/live/2024/mar/04/middle-east-crisis-live-israel-gaza-kamala-harris-ceasefire-latest-news?page=with%3Ablock-65e5b20f8f0848c0e204e24c#block-65e5b20f8f0848c0e204e24c) Lebanese media is reporting Israeli airstrikes in the south of the country, near the UN-drawn blue line that separates **Lebanon** from **Israel**. Earlier today Israeli media reported that one person had been killed and at least seven wounded by fire from inside Lebanon that crossed into Israel at **Margaliot**. [Share](mailto:?subject=Middle%20East%20crisis%20live:%2016-year-old%20boy%20reportedly%20killed%20during%20Israeli%20raid%20near%20Ramallah&body=https://www.theguardian.com/world/live/2024/mar/04/middle-east-crisis-live-israel-gaza-kamala-harris-ceasefire-latest-news?page=with%3Ablock-65e5acc38f083e1fa9bcf42e#block-65e5acc38f083e1fa9bcf42e) Haaretz is reporting that a planned meeting to discuss Israeli “security preparations for Ramadan” scheduled for today has been cancelled, due to the personal health of **Benjamin Netanyahu**. He was reportedly absent from government meetings yesterday due to flu. Ramadan is expected to start on 10 March. [Share](mailto:?subject=Middle%20East%20crisis%20live:%2016-year-old%20boy%20reportedly%20killed%20during%20Israeli%20raid%20near%20Ramallah&body=https://www.theguardian.com/world/live/2024/mar/04/middle-east-crisis-live-israel-gaza-kamala-harris-ceasefire-latest-news?page=with%3Ablock-65e5ac128f0848c0e204e1f8#block-65e5ac128f0848c0e204e1f8) Family members of those still being held hostage by [Hamas](https://www.theguardian.com/world/hamas) in Gaza have staged a silent march today in the Knesset in **Jerusalem**, demanding their release after 150 days in captivity. ![Family members of Israeli hostages carry pictures of their loved ones at the Knesset in Jerusalem.](https://i.guim.co.uk/img/media/d92b0403fc0dbeffda9f8d3f7784ed863fcfa202/0_0_5109_3406/master/5109.jpg?width=465&dpr=1&s=none)[](https://www.theguardian.com/world/live/2024/mar/04/middle-east-crisis-live-israel-gaza-kamala-harris-ceasefire-latest-news#img-2) Family members of Israeli hostages carry pictures of their loved ones at the Knesset in Jerusalem. Photograph: Abir Sultan/EPA ![Family members of Israeli hostages carry pictures of their loved ones at the Knesset in Jerusalem.](https://i.guim.co.uk/img/media/5b0293d22a1fa334125c48db21d35e28b8c23b3a/0_0_4097_2458/master/4097.jpg?width=465&dpr=1&s=none)[](https://www.theguardian.com/world/live/2024/mar/04/middle-east-crisis-live-israel-gaza-kamala-harris-ceasefire-latest-news#img-3) Family members of Israeli hostages carry pictures of their loved ones at the Knesset in Jerusalem. Photograph: Abir Sultan/EPA Israel believes that about 134 hostages are still being held in Gaza, although it is thought that nearly a quarter of them may have already been killed. > עכשיו בכנסת,צעדה שקטה וקורעת לב. > > 150 ימים. [pic.twitter.com/YTxb9SFinz](https://t.co/YTxb9SFinz) — Noa Shpigel (@NoaShpigel) [March 4, 2024](https://twitter.com/NoaShpigel/status/1764578192046645253?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw) [Share](mailto:?subject=Middle%20East%20crisis%20live:%2016-year-old%20boy%20reportedly%20killed%20during%20Israeli%20raid%20near%20Ramallah&body=https://www.theguardian.com/world/live/2024/mar/04/middle-east-crisis-live-israel-gaza-kamala-harris-ceasefire-latest-news?page=with%3Ablock-65e5a6708f083e1fa9bcf3d6#block-65e5a6708f083e1fa9bcf3d6) **A 16-year-old boy has been shot and killed by Israeli security forces during an overnight raid in the al-Amari camp in the Israeli-occupied West Bank city of Ramallah, according to reports.** The Palestinian Authority ministry of health said the killing of Mustafa Abu Shalbak happened in the early morning hours. Shalbak was wounded in the neck and chest, and pronounced dead in hospital. Palestinian news agency Wafa reports that Isreali forces fired live ammunition during a confrontation after they entered the camp. ![Israeli troops raid the Al-Amari refugee camp near Ramallah, in the Israeli-occupied West Bank, on 4 March.](https://i.guim.co.uk/img/media/b65643659f7c9b07ab646b04f3de37047e3fb718/0_0_8256_5504/master/8256.jpg?width=465&dpr=1&s=none)[](https://www.theguardian.com/world/live/2024/mar/04/middle-east-crisis-live-israel-gaza-kamala-harris-ceasefire-latest-news#img-4) Israeli troops raid the Al-Amari refugee camp near Ramallah, in the Israeli-occupied West Bank, on 4 March. Photograph: Jaafar Ashtiyeh/AFP/Getty Images A crowd has carried Shalbak’s body through Ramallah today ahead of his burial. Palestinian news agency Wafa also reports that 55 Palestinians were detained overnight by Israeli security forces operating in the Israeli-occupied West Bank. 22 people were detained, it said, in Hebron, with other detentions taking place in Tubas, Bethlehem, Qalqilya, and East Jerusalem. The Palestinian Prisoner’s Society states that about 7,400 Palestinians have now been detained by Israel since 7 October. [Share](mailto:?subject=Middle%20East%20crisis%20live:%2016-year-old%20boy%20reportedly%20killed%20during%20Israeli%20raid%20near%20Ramallah&body=https://www.theguardian.com/world/live/2024/mar/04/middle-east-crisis-live-israel-gaza-kamala-harris-ceasefire-latest-news?page=with%3Ablock-65e5a2d68f083e1fa9bcf3b7#block-65e5a2d68f083e1fa9bcf3b7) Israeli media is reporting that one person has been killed and several wounded in **Margaliot** in northern [Israel](https://www.theguardian.com/world/israel), which is close to the UN-drawn blue line that separates **Lebanon** and **Israel**. _More details soon …_ [Share](mailto:?subject=Middle%20East%20crisis%20live:%2016-year-old%20boy%20reportedly%20killed%20during%20Israeli%20raid%20near%20Ramallah&body=https://www.theguardian.com/world/live/2024/mar/04/middle-east-crisis-live-israel-gaza-kamala-harris-ceasefire-latest-news?page=with%3Ablock-65e59dd58f083e1fa9bcf38a#block-65e59dd58f083e1fa9bcf38a) **Volker Türk**, the UN high commissioner for human rights, has emphasised in Geneva today the risk that the Israel-Hamas conflict could spread much wider. Reuters reports he said: > I am deeply concerned that in this powder keg, any spark could lead to a much broader conflagration. This would have implications for every country in the Middle East, and many beyond it. It is imperative to do everything possible to avoid a wider conflagration. He described military escalation in southern Lebanon between Israel, Hezbollah and other armed anti-Israeli groups as “extremely worrying”. [Share](mailto:?subject=Middle%20East%20crisis%20live:%2016-year-old%20boy%20reportedly%20killed%20during%20Israeli%20raid%20near%20Ramallah&body=https://www.theguardian.com/world/live/2024/mar/04/middle-east-crisis-live-israel-gaza-kamala-harris-ceasefire-latest-news?page=with%3Ablock-65e59c018f0884257d1a66f5#block-65e59c018f0884257d1a66f5) Here are some images sent over the news wires showing the aftermath of the latest Israeli strikes on **Rafah** in the south of the Gaza Strip. ![Palestinians carry out search and rescue operations among the rubble after an Israeli attack in Rafah.](https://i.guim.co.uk/img/media/8a37e24aa0617bdecf49e75ab6ae61db80ea1673/0_0_6720_4480/master/6720.jpg?width=465&dpr=1&s=none)[](https://www.theguardian.com/world/live/2024/mar/04/middle-east-crisis-live-israel-gaza-kamala-harris-ceasefire-latest-news#img-5) Palestinians carry out search and rescue operations among the rubble after an Israeli attack in Rafah. Photograph: Anadolu/Getty Images ![Palestinians gather to look at the aftermath of an Israeli strike in Rafah.](https://i.guim.co.uk/img/media/ea5a5b81b80e4c98232b028282f594cc2bc1c84e/0_0_6720_4480/master/6720.jpg?width=465&dpr=1&s=none)[](https://www.theguardian.com/world/live/2024/mar/04/middle-east-crisis-live-israel-gaza-kamala-harris-ceasefire-latest-news#img-6) Palestinians gather to look at the aftermath of an Israeli strike in Rafah. Photograph: Anadolu/Getty Images ![People inspect damage and recover items from their homes following Israeli airstrikes in Rafah.](https://i.guim.co.uk/img/media/47fdb520221649cd6d2875751927227c7106f9ed/0_102_6720_4032/master/6720.jpg?width=465&dpr=1&s=none)[](https://www.theguardian.com/world/live/2024/mar/04/middle-east-crisis-live-israel-gaza-kamala-harris-ceasefire-latest-news#img-7) People inspect damage and recover items from their homes following Israeli airstrikes in Rafah. Photograph: Ahmad Hasaballah/Getty Images [Share](mailto:?subject=Middle%20East%20crisis%20live:%2016-year-old%20boy%20reportedly%20killed%20during%20Israeli%20raid%20near%20Ramallah&body=https://www.theguardian.com/world/live/2024/mar/04/middle-east-crisis-live-israel-gaza-kamala-harris-ceasefire-latest-news?page=with%3Ablock-65e5915c8f0884257d1a66a4#block-65e5915c8f0884257d1a66a4) Reporting from **Rafah** for Al Jazeera, Hani Mahmoud writes “People have their eyes and ears on the talks in Cairo and all the leaked reports of either progress or regression in the talks, but also on what’s going on on the ground – the overnight relentless attacks in central and northern Rafah city”. [Share](mailto:?subject=Middle%20East%20crisis%20live:%2016-year-old%20boy%20reportedly%20killed%20during%20Israeli%20raid%20near%20Ramallah&body=https://www.theguardian.com/world/live/2024/mar/04/middle-east-crisis-live-israel-gaza-kamala-harris-ceasefire-latest-news?page=with%3Ablock-65e590038f083e1fa9bcf32f#block-65e590038f083e1fa9bcf32f) **At least 30,534 Palestinians have been killed and 71,920 injured by Israel’s military offensive on Gaza since 7 October, according to the latest figures from the Hamas-led health ministry in the Palestinian territory.** Over the same time period, in its latest briefing, the UN office for the coordination of humanitarian affairs (OCHA) noted that at least 409 Palestinians have been reported killed, including 103 children, and 4,611 Palestinians have been reported injured, including 709 children, in the Israeli-occupied West Bank including East Jerusalem. It has not been possible for journalists to independently verify the casualty figures being issued during the conflict. [Share](mailto:?subject=Middle%20East%20crisis%20live:%2016-year-old%20boy%20reportedly%20killed%20during%20Israeli%20raid%20near%20Ramallah&body=https://www.theguardian.com/world/live/2024/mar/04/middle-east-crisis-live-israel-gaza-kamala-harris-ceasefire-latest-news?page=with%3Ablock-65e586938f083e1fa9bcf2e0#block-65e586938f083e1fa9bcf2e0) **AFP reports that Egyptian media has said there has been “significant progress in the negotiations” during talks with [Hamas](https://www.theguardian.com/world/hamas) in Cairo.** Al-Qahera News cited an unnamed senior official saying: “Egypt continues its intense efforts to reach a truce before Ramadan.” Talks involving Israeli negotiators took place in the Qatari city of Doha on Saturday. [Share](mailto:?subject=Middle%20East%20crisis%20live:%2016-year-old%20boy%20reportedly%20killed%20during%20Israeli%20raid%20near%20Ramallah&body=https://www.theguardian.com/world/live/2024/mar/04/middle-east-crisis-live-israel-gaza-kamala-harris-ceasefire-latest-news?page=with%3Ablock-65e581368f0848c0e204e0b4#block-65e581368f0848c0e204e0b4) In [Israel](https://www.theguardian.com/world/israel), interior security minister **Itamar Ben-Gvir** and opposition leader **Yair Lapid** have traded social media insults this morning. Citing media reporting over the weekend, Lapid posted to social media that “The minister of national security is a threat to national security. You cannot trust him with sensitive material, you cannot trust him around intelligence personnel and you cannot trust him in the defence cabinet. Any normal prime minister would have fired him this morning.” Ben-Gvir responded “Yair, there is no question here as to whether you are a liar or an ignoramus. You’re just both.” Lapid was referring to reports at the weekend that [security agencies in Israel have withdrawn from briefings](https://www.timesofisrael.com/security-agencies-withdraw-from-briefings-led-by-ben-gvir-over-confidentiality-concerns/) led by Ben-Gvir over confidentiality concerns. Ben-Gvir has also this morning had some words on social media for US vice-president **Kamala Harris**. He responded to [her calls for a ceasefire](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2024/mar/04/kamala-harris-israel-idf-gaza-catastrophe-ceasefire-hamas-hostage-deal) by posting “It’s time to destroy Hamas, Kamala”. > It’s time to destroy Hamas, Kamala. > > — איתמר בן גביר (@itamarbengvir) [March 4, 2024](https://twitter.com/itamarbengvir/status/1764537533969383444?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw) [Share](mailto:?subject=Middle%20East%20crisis%20live:%2016-year-old%20boy%20reportedly%20killed%20during%20Israeli%20raid%20near%20Ramallah&body=https://www.theguardian.com/world/live/2024/mar/04/middle-east-crisis-live-israel-gaza-kamala-harris-ceasefire-latest-news?page=with%3Ablock-65e57de58f083e1fa9bcf2b4#block-65e57de58f083e1fa9bcf2b4) **In its latest operational briefing, Israel’s military claims to have apprehended suspected members of Hamas and Islamic Jihad who were attempting to flee “under the protection of the civilian population”, and to have destroyed a cell who were firing rockets from Gaza into [Israel](https://www.theguardian.com/world/israel).** In its message on the IDF’s official Telegram channel, the military said: > On Saturday, Islamic Jihad terrorists fired rockets toward kibbutz Be’eri and kibbutz Hatzerim. In under 30 minutes since the launch, IDF troops identified the terrorist cell and directed an aircraft that struck and eliminated the terrorists. > > Over the past day, IDF troops killed 15 terrorists using sniper, tank, and aerial fire. > > IDF troops led the evacuation of the civilian population, and apprehended approximately 80 wanted individuals suspected of involvement in terrorist activity, including Hamas and Islamic Jihad terrorists who attempted to flee under the protection of the civilian population. The briefing stated that the IDF continued to operate in Khan Younis, inside the [Gaza](https://www.theguardian.com/world/gaza) Strip, and claimed to be “striking terror targets and killing terrorists operating from within civilian areas.” The claims have not been independently verified. [Share](mailto:?subject=Middle%20East%20crisis%20live:%2016-year-old%20boy%20reportedly%20killed%20during%20Israeli%20raid%20near%20Ramallah&body=https://www.theguardian.com/world/live/2024/mar/04/middle-east-crisis-live-israel-gaza-kamala-harris-ceasefire-latest-news?page=with%3Ablock-65e5762b8f083e1fa9bcf28c#block-65e5762b8f083e1fa9bcf28c) ![Archie Bland](https://i.guim.co.uk/img/uploads/2022/04/19/Archie_Bland_2_R.png?width=300&quality=85&auto=format&fit=max&s=d6ef0a0e373eb753228e899d2ed176c1) Archie Bland Yesterday, US vice-president **Kamala Harris** [called for an immediate six-week ceasefire](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2024/mar/04/kamala-harris-israel-idf-gaza-catastrophe-ceasefire-hamas-hostage-deal), saying that “People in Gaza are starving” and that the Israeli government must do more to increase the flow of aid. “The conditions are inhumane,” she added. “Our common humanity compels us to act.” Here are some of the key parameters in the outline of a potential deal to pause the fighting: * Which hostages would be released of those still alive in Gaza, [estimated to be under 100](https://www.wsj.com/world/middle-east/hamas-hostages-israel-gaza-41432124). The senior US official said that Israel appeared to be willing to strike a deal if Hamas would agree to the “default defined category of vulnerable hostages” of the sick and wounded, elderly people, and women. * The production of a list of the hostages, specifying which are alive and which are dead, which has not yet materialised: Hamas says that it is impossible to produce while the fighting continues because the remaining hostages are being held by different groups in different places. It appears that up to half of those still in captivity could be released if a deal is done. * The ratio of Palestinian prisoners held by Israel to be released in exchange. The terms appear likely to involve the release of hundreds of prisoners. * A six-week truce to begin as soon as a deal is announced – with repeated suggestions that any deal should begin by the start of Ramadan, expected 10 March, and prevent a threatened Israeli ground attack on the Rafah region where about 1.4 million Palestinians are now sheltering. * More aid allowed into Gaza in the hope of staving off the threat of famine. Hamas has also said it is demanding that Palestinians displaced by the fighting will be allowed to return home. * Hamas has also called for a complete Israeli military withdrawal from the Gaza Strip, but Benjamin Netanyahu has refused to countenance such a step before Hamas is destroyed and all hostages are freed. _This is an extract from today’s First Edition newsletter, which you can read [here](https://www.theguardian.com/world/2024/mar/04/monday-briefing-the-obstacles-still-in-the-way-of-an-israel-hamas-peace-deal)._ * **[Sign up here for our free daily newsletter, First Edition](https://www.theguardian.com/global/2022/sep/20/sign-up-for-the-first-edition-newsletter-our-free-news-email)** [Share](mailto:?subject=Middle%20East%20crisis%20live:%2016-year-old%20boy%20reportedly%20killed%20during%20Israeli%20raid%20near%20Ramallah&body=https://www.theguardian.com/world/live/2024/mar/04/middle-east-crisis-live-israel-gaza-kamala-harris-ceasefire-latest-news?page=with%3Ablock-65e5743c8f083e1fa9bcf284#block-65e5743c8f083e1fa9bcf284) Hello and welcome to the Guardian’s continuing coverage of the crisis in the Middle East. US vice-president Kamala Harris will meet with Israeli war cabinet member Benny Gantz, after calling for a ceasefire on Monday. An official from Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud party said Gantz did not have approval from the prime minister for his meetings in Washington, underscoring the widening crack within Israel’s wartime leadership nearly six months into the [Gaza](https://www.theguardian.com/world/gaza) war. More on that in a moment, first here’s a summary of the day’s other main events: * **A Hamas delegation was in Cairo on Sunday for talks on efforts to [broker a ceasefire in the war in Gaza](https://www.theguardian.com/world/2024/mar/03/hamas-delegation-arrives-for-gaza-ceasefire-talks-in-cairo)** after indications that Israel had provisionally accepted a six-week phased hostage and truce deal before the beginning of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. Qatari and US mediators also arrived in the Egyptian capital on Sunday, according to the state-linked Al Qahera News. * **US vice-president Kamala Harris called out Israel on Sunday for not doing enough to ease a “humanitarian catastrophe” in Gaza**. Harris [called for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2024/mar/04/kamala-harris-israel-idf-gaza-catastrophe-ceasefire-hamas-hostage-deal) and urged Hamas to accept a deal to release hostages in return for a six-week cessation of hostilities. * **Benny Gantz, a retired [Israel](https://www.theguardian.com/world/israel) Defense Forces (IDF) chief of staff who is part of Israel’s war cabinet was in Washington on Sunday for talks with US officials**, sparking a rebuke from Benjamin Netanyahu, according to an Israeli official. An official from Netanyahu’s Likud party said Gantz’s visit was without authorisation from the Israeli leader, the Associated Press reported. The official said Netanyahu, Israel’s prime minister, had a “tough talk” with Gantz about the trip and told him the country has “just one prime minister”. * **Yemen’s Houthis have vowed to continue targeting British ships in the Gulf of Aden [after the sinking of Belize-flagged UK-owned vessel Rubymar](https://www.theguardian.com/world/2024/mar/02/stricken-ship-attacked-by-houthi-rebels-sinks-in-red-sea)**. An Italian warship participating in the EU naval protection force in the Red Sea [shot down a Houthi missile on Saturday](https://www.theguardian.com/world/2024/mar/03/italian-warship-forced-to-shoot-down-houthi-missile-in-red-sea) in a rare engagement by the country’s navy, which has largely avoided direct action since the second world war. * **Israel’s military has completed a preliminary review of [the killing of over 100 Palestinian people near aid trucks last week](https://www.theguardian.com/world/2024/feb/29/gaza-aid-trucks-death-toll-explainer)**, which claimed that Israeli forces did not strike the convoy and that most Palestinians died in a stampede, a military spokesperson said. Palestinian authorities say, however, that Israeli forces carried out a massacre, opening fire on a crowd of people who had gathered in the hope that food would be distributed. It is Martin Belam with you today for the next few hours. You can contact me at [[email protected]](mailto:[email protected]). [Share](mailto:?subject=Middle%20East%20crisis%20live:%2016-year-old%20boy%20reportedly%20killed%20during%20Israeli%20raid%20near%20Ramallah&body=https://www.theguardian.com/world/live/2024/mar/04/middle-east-crisis-live-israel-gaza-kamala-harris-ceasefire-latest-news?page=with%3Ablock-65e50b208f083e1fa9bcf036#block-65e50b208f083e1fa9bcf036)
  • The US vice-president, [Kamala Harris](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/kamala-harris), has said there are 'no excuses' for the Israeli government not to do more to increase the flow of humanitarian aid in Gaza. Harris, speaking on Sunday in front of the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama, where state troopers beat US civil rights marchers nearly six decades ago, called for an immediate ceasefire and urged Hamas to accept a deal to release hostages in return for a six-week cessation of hostilities
  • [![Middle East crisis — explained](https://media.npr.org/assets/img/2023/10/12/2023-10-12t160958z_1697126995_dpaf231012x911x014899_rtrfipp_4_conflict-war-politics-unrest-militaryequipment-defence_wide-b7204f785918e230d0fb7ac44ab2cd3e4d129b4a.jpg?s={width}&c={quality}&f={format})](https://www.npr.org/series/1205445976/middle-east-crisis) [![A U.N. report finds 'reasonable grounds to believe' attacks in Israel included rapes](https://media.npr.org/assets/img/2024/03/04/gettyimages-2036497525_wide-94dce2a4481c42bca834493bb0f66c57b150ea6a.jpg?s={width}&c={quality}&f={format})](https://www.npr.org/2024/03/04/1235824305/israel-sexual-assault-rape-hamas-attack-un-report) [![Photos: U.S. and Jordan conduct airdrop into Gaza as cease-fire talks continue](https://media.npr.org/assets/img/2024/03/02/gettyimages-2053312602_wide-f3202f8f57e249557f6c2a06d77d8b4caf0abf63.jpg?s={width}&c={quality}&f={format})](https://www.npr.org/sections/pictureshow/2024/03/04/1235563393/israel-gaza-war-photos) [![Kamala Harris called for a cease-fire in Gaza. 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  • _The New York Times Audio app is home to journalism and storytelling, and provides news, depth and serendipity. If you haven’t already,_ [_download_](https://apps.apple.com/us/app/nyt-audio/id1549293936) _it here — available to Times news subscribers on iOS — and_ [_sign up_](https://www.nytimes.com/newsletters/audio) _for our weekly newsletter._ The Headlines brings you the biggest stories of the day from the Times journalists who are covering them, all in about five minutes. Image![Kamala Harris speaking at a podium with a vice-presidential seal. Behind her are the words “Fight for Reproductive Freedoms.”](https://static01.nyt.com/images/2024/03/14/multimedia/14Headlines-pmfq/14Headlines-pmfq-articleLarge.jpg?quality=75&auto=webp&disable=upscale) The vice president plans to meet with abortion providers in Minneapolis, a striking move that shows how assertive Democrats have grown on the issue.Credit...Nic Antaya for The New York Times * **[Kamala Harris Will Visit Abortion Clinic, in Historic First](https://www.nytimes.com/2024/03/13/us/politics/kamala-harris-abortion-clinic.html)**, _by Lisa Lerer and Nicholas Nehamas_ * **[Why a Sale of TikTok Would Not Be Easy](https://www.nytimes.com/2024/03/13/technology/tiktok-ban-sale-china.html)**, _by David McCabe_ * **[As Biden Impeachment Flails, House Republicans Explore Criminal Referrals](https://www.nytimes.com/2024/03/14/us/politics/as-biden-impeachment-flails-house-republicans-explore-criminal-referrals.html)**, _by Luke Broadwater_ * **[Israel Allows Aid Directly Into Northern Gaza, Raising Hopes for More](https://www.nytimes.com/2024/03/13/world/middleeast/israel-gaza-aid-convoy.html)**, _by Adam Rasgon, Lars Dolder, Victoria Kim and Michael Levenson_ * **[A New Surge in Power Use Is Threatening U.S. Climate Goals](https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2024/03/13/climate/electric-power-climate-change.html)**, _by Brad Plumer and Nadja Popovich_
  • Kamala Harris visited a [Planned Parenthood](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/planned-parenthood) abortion clinic on Thursday, becoming what is believed to be the first vice-president ever to do so. Harris stopped by a clinic in [Minnesota](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/minnesota), a state where abortion remains legal following the overturning of Roe v Wade, as part of her nationwide tour to highlight the impact of Roe’s downfall. Harris also toured the clinic, which remained open to patients as the nation’s first female vice-president made her historic visit. “Walking through this clinic, that’s what I saw, … people who have dedicated their lives to the profession of providing healthcare in a safe place that gives people dignity,” Harris told reporters after her tour. “And I think we should all want that for each other.” Protesters had already assembled outside the clinic by the time of Harris’s arrival. They carried signs with messages such as “Planned Parenthood = abortion” and “abortion is not healthcare”. Harris and Joe Biden are banking on outrage over Roe to help propel them to a second term in the White House come November. Anger over the landmark decision’s demise was credited with helping stop a much-promised “red wave” of Republican victories in the 2022 midterms, as well as leading abortion rights to triumph in multiple ballot initiatives, including in red states such as Kentucky, Kansas and Ohio. One in eight voters now say that abortion is their top issue in the 2024 elections, [according to a KFF poll released last week](https://www.kff.org/womens-health-policy/press-release/1-in-8-voters-say-abortion-is-most-important-to-their-vote-they-lean-democratic-support-biden-and-want-abortion-to-be-legal/). Harris and Biden have said that they would like to codify Roe’s protections into law – legislation that is unlikely to move anytime soon, given the degree of inaction and polarization in the US Congress. Biden’s record on and ability to talk about abortion rights dims in comparison to his running mate’s. Biden, a devout Catholic, has said that he is personally “not big” on abortion. And while Biden highlighted the threat to “reproductive freedom” in his State of the Union address to Congress last week, he did not say the word “abortion”. In contrast, Harris has [spoken far more openly about the issue](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2024/mar/09/kamala-harris-reaching-voters-abortion-gaza-election-2024). On Thursday, she mentioned “abortion care” and said that the overturning of Roe has led to a “healthcare crisis”. “Elections matter,” Harris told reporters. “When it comes to national elections and who sits in the United States Congress, there’s a fundamental point on this issue that I think most people agree with, which is that one does not have to abandon their faith or deeply held beliefs to agree the government should not be telling women what to do with her body.” Asked about her role in this issue, Harris said: “My role is to do what I just did, which is to articulate exactly these points and to continue to articulate them, and to organize folks around what I know is an issue that is impacting more people than you will ever really know.”
  • Vice President Kamala Harris on Saturday toured the still-bloody and bullet-pocked classroom building in Parkland, Fla., where a gunman killed 14 students and three staff members in 2018, using the grim backdrop to announce a new federal resource center and to call for stricter enforcement of gun laws. The freshman building at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School had been preserved as evidence for criminal trials and is set to be demolished this summer. For now, it remains a memorial to one of the most shocking mass shootings in the history of the United States. In remarks after taking her tour and meeting for more than an hour with family members of victims of the attack, Ms. Harris said the experience had been a compelling one. “Let us, through the courage and the call to action of these families, find it in ourselves to consider what they’ve been through as some level of motivation and inspiration for all of us,” she said. “This school is soon going to be torn down,” the vice president added. “But the memory of it will never be erased.” Ms. Harris said the attack, carried out by a former student with a history of mental health and behavior problems, should prompt officials around the country to embrace local red-flag laws. These allow courts to temporarily seize firearms and other dangerous weapons when they believe a person may be a threat to themselves or others. The Parkland shooter had purchased his gun legally. Thank you for your patience while we verify access. If you are in Reader mode please exit and [log into](https://myaccount.nytimes.com/auth/login?response_type=cookie&client_id=vi&redirect_uri=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2024%2F03%2F23%2Fus%2Fpolitics%2Fkamala-harris-parkland-guns.html&asset=opttrunc) your Times account, or [subscribe](https://www.nytimes.com/subscription?campaignId=89WYR&redirect_uri=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2024%2F03%2F23%2Fus%2Fpolitics%2Fkamala-harris-parkland-guns.html) for all of The Times. Thank you for your patience while we verify access. Already a subscriber? [Log in](https://myaccount.nytimes.com/auth/login?response_type=cookie&client_id=vi&redirect_uri=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2024%2F03%2F23%2Fus%2Fpolitics%2Fkamala-harris-parkland-guns.html&asset=opttrunc). Want all of The Times? [Subscribe](https://www.nytimes.com/subscription?campaignId=89WYR&redirect_uri=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2024%2F03%2F23%2Fus%2Fpolitics%2Fkamala-harris-parkland-guns.html).
  • The White House has announced a new national office to support states implementing “red flag” laws to combat [gun violence](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/gun-control), an initiative funded by the justice department. Kamala Harris made the announcement on Saturday during a visit to Parkland, Florida, where she toured the site of the nation’s worst high school shooting, the 2018 Marjory Stoneman Douglas massacre that killed 17. The vice-president met with victims’ families – many of whom have been active in gun control advocacy since the shooting – and visited the building where 14 students and three staff members were slain. The launch of the federal Extreme Risk Protection Order Resource Center (Erpo) follows Joe Biden’s establishment of the White House [Office of Gun Violence Prevention](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2023/sep/21/office-gun-violence-prevention-joe-biden-kamala-harris) in September, which the president tapped Harris to lead. Operated through the [Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Violence Solutions](https://publichealth.jhu.edu/center-for-gun-violence-solutions/solutions), and paid for by a justice department grant, Erpo is designed to help state and local governments, law enforcement, and others – including behavioral health and social service providers – “optimize” the use of red flag laws, Harris said. It will provide training and technical assistance, including educational opportunities and workshops “for a wide variety of stakeholders”. But the vice-president also acknowledged that red flag laws, which facilitate the temporary removal of firearms from a person a court believes capable of harming themselves or others, are not universally popular. Only 21 states have implemented red flag laws, and the White House said that only six of those states had taken advantage of $750m in funding that the Biden administration made available through the 2022 [Bipartisan Safer Communities Act](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2022/oct/01/gun-control-support-republicans-safer-communities-act) (BSCA) for crisis-intervention initiatives such as red flag programs and mental health, drug and veteran treatment courts. Harris called on the other 29 states to enact red flag laws and urged those that already have them to tap into the BSCA funds to support them. “The shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas high school occurred after there were clear warning signs, but there were no tools to remove the shooter’s firearm,” a [White House statement](https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefing-room/statements-releases/2024/03/23/fact-sheet-vice-president-harris-announces-gun-safety-solutions-while-continuing-efforts-to-keep-schools-safe-from-gun-violence/) announcing the new resource office said. “The survivors of the shooting advocated for passage of a red flag law in [Florida](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/florida), and the tragedy helped to inspire the passage of red flag laws in other states. These laws have been shown to prevent mass shootings and suicides, but the tools made available under these laws are only effective if people are aware of them and can properly invoke them.” The Parkland shooter was sentenced to life imprisonment at a trial last year after two jury members refused to recommend the death penalty. The Republican legislative majority in Florida subsequently tightened the law to allow a majority jury recommendation in such cases. Republicans also tried to reverse another provision of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas safety act, passed after the mass killing there. But the measure to lower the buying age of long guns from 21 back to 18 stalled in the state senate after passing the house. [skip past newsletter promotion](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2024/mar/23/kamala-harris-red-flag-gun-control-laws#EmailSignup-skip-link-13) Sign up to First Thing Our US morning briefing breaks down the key stories of the day, telling you what’s happening and why it matters **Privacy Notice:** Newsletters may contain info about charities, online ads, and content funded by outside parties. For more information see our [Privacy Policy](https://www.theguardian.com/help/privacy-policy). We use Google reCaptcha to protect our website and the Google [Privacy Policy](https://policies.google.com/privacy) and [Terms of Service](https://policies.google.com/terms) apply. after newsletter promotion Max Schachter, whose 14-year-old son Alex was among the Parkland victims, joined Harris on the tour of the building where the murders occurred, one day after helping guide the FBI director, Christopher Wray, through the school. [In a tweet](https://x.com/maxschachter/status/1771372449747091887), he rejected criticism from another victim’s family that Harris’s visit had been politically motivated. “It is unlike any other crime scene. It has been frozen in time since the day of the shooting. Nothing has been removed, and it has not been cleaned,” said Schachter, whose non-profit Safe Schools for Alex advises students, parents, school districts and law enforcement on campus safety best practices. “I have had many conversations and given many presentations across the country, but there is no way to replicate what one sees and experiences when they walk through the site. It profoundly affects people. “Every time an official walks through the building, lives are saved and schools are safer. This is not a political visit. She is the vice-president of the US and she has an obligation to come to Parkland.” The building that Harris toured – previously visited by numerous other elected state and federal officials at the families’ invitation – is scheduled to finally be demolished this summer, more than six years after the deadly shooting, and replaced with a permanent memorial to the victims.
  • Mar 28, 2024 5:00 AM Vice President Kamala Harris says new rules for government AI deployments, including a requirement that algorithms are checked for bias, will “put the public interest first.” ![Closeup of Kamala Harris speaking on stage](https://media.wired.com/photos/6604bb1ae608ba8ede7a3487/master/w_2560%2Cc_limit/Kamala-Harris-AI-Guidelines-Business-1448849141.jpg) Vice President Kamala HarrisPhotograph: Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images The US government issued new rules Thursday requiring more caution and transparency from federal agencies using [artificial intelligence](https://www.wired.com/tag/artificial-intelligence/), saying they are needed to protect the public as AI rapidly advances. But the new policy also has provisions to encourage AI innovation in government agencies when the technology can be used for public good. The US hopes to emerge as an international leader with its new regime for government AI. Vice President Kamala Harris said during a news briefing ahead of the announcement that the administration plans for the policies to “serve as a model for global action.” She said that the US “will continue to call on all nations to follow our lead and put the public interest first when it comes to government use of AI.” The new policy from the White House Office of Management and Budget will guide AI use across the federal government. It requires more transparency as to how the government uses AI and also calls for more development of the technology within federal agencies. The policy sees the administration trying to strike a balance between mitigating risks from deeper use of AI—the extent of which are not known—and using AI tools to solve existential threats like climate change and disease. The announcement adds to a string of moves by the Biden administration to embrace and restrain AI. In October, President Biden signed a sweeping [executive order](https://www.wired.com/story/joe-bidens-executive-order-ai-us-government-chatgpt/) on AI that would foster expansion of AI tech by the government but also requires those who make large AI models to give the government information about their activities, in the interest of national security. In November, the US joined the UK, China, and members of the EU in [signing a declaration](https://www.wired.com/story/uk-ai-summit-declaration/) that acknowledged the dangers of rapid AI advances but also called for international collaboration. Harris in the same week revealed a nonbinding [declaration](https://www.wired.com/story/the-us-and-30-other-nations-agree-to-set-guardrails-for-military-ai/) on military use of AI, signed by 31 nations. It sets up rudimentary guardrails and calls for the deactivation of systems that engage in “unintended behavior.” The new policy for US government use of AI announced Thursday asks agencies to take several steps to prevent unintended consequences of AI deployments. To start, agencies must verify that the AI tools they use do not put Americans at risk. For example, for the Department of Veterans Affairs to use AI in its hospitals it must verify that the technology does not give racially biased diagnoses. Research has found that AI systems and [other algorithms](https://www.wired.com/story/how-algorithm-blocked-kidney-transplants-black-patients/) used to [inform diagnosis](https://www.wired.com/story/these-algorithms-look-x-rays-detect-your-race/) or decide [which patients receive care](https://www.wired.com/story/how-algorithm-favored-whites-over-blacks-health-care/) can reinforce historic patterns of discrimination. If an agency cannot guarantee such safeguards, it must stop using the AI system or justify its continued use. US agencies face a December 1 deadline to comply with these new requirements. The policy also asks for more transparency about government AI systems, requiring agencies to release government-owned AI models, data, and code, as long as the release of such information does not pose a threat to the public or government. Agencies must publicly report each year how they are using AI, the potential risks the systems pose, and how those risks are being mitigated. And the new rules also require federal agencies to beef up their AI expertise, mandating each to appoint a chief AI officer to oversee all AI used within that agency. It’s a role that focuses on promoting AI innovation and also watching for its dangers. Officials say the changes will also remove some barriers to AI use in federal agencies, a move that may facilitate more responsible experimentation with AI. The technology has the potential to help agencies review damage following natural disasters, forecast extreme weather, map disease spread, and control air traffic. Countries around the world are moving to regulate AI. The EU voted in December to pass its [AI Act](https://www.wired.com/story/eu-ai-act/), a measure that governs the creation and use of AI technologies, and [formally adopted](https://www.europarl.europa.eu/news/en/press-room/20240308IPR19015/artificial-intelligence-act-meps-adopt-landmark-law) it earlier this month. China, too, is working on [comprehensive AI regulation](https://www.technologyreview.com/2024/01/17/1086704/china-ai-regulation-changes-2024/).
  • Vice President Kamala Harris will travel to Arizona on Friday to assail former President Donald J. Trump over abortion restrictions, with plans to blame him for bans in the state and across the country. In her remarks at a rally in Tucson, Ms. Harris will lean into the [Biden campaign’s new attack line](https://www.nytimes.com/2024/04/11/us/politics/kamala-harris-abortion-biden-democrats.html) on laws pushed by Republicans that have cut off abortion access for millions of American women: Donald Trump did this. This week, [Arizona became the center](https://www.nytimes.com/2024/04/09/us/politics/arizona-abortion-politics.html) of the national debate on reproductive rights after a ruling by the state’s top court upheld an 1864 law banning nearly all abortions. The decision gave Democrats around the country an opportunity to focus their races on abortion rights, a strategy that has led to unexpected victories for the party over the last two years. The Biden campaign has already released two new ads this week hammering Mr. Trump on abortion. “The overturning of Roe was a seismic event,” Ms. Harris is expected to say in Tucson, according to a copy of her prepared remarks distributed by the Biden campaign. “And this ban in Arizona is one of the biggest aftershocks yet.” Ms. Harris’s comments on Friday may be some of the most direct and extended attacks that she has made against Mr. Trump on the issue. While she has appeared frequently at events about abortion rights, she has often done so in her official capacity, limiting her ability to criticize Republicans. The event in Tucson, however, is a campaign rally, meaning Ms. Harris can speak more freely. “We all must understand who is to blame,” her prepared remarks say. “It is the former president, Donald Trump. It is Donald Trump who, during his campaign in 2016, said women should be punished for seeking an abortion.” Thank you for your patience while we verify access. If you are in Reader mode please exit and [log into](https://myaccount.nytimes.com/auth/login?response_type=cookie&client_id=vi&redirect_uri=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2024%2F04%2F12%2Fus%2Fpolitics%2Fkamala-harris-arizona-abortion-trump.html&asset=opttrunc) your Times account, or [subscribe](https://www.nytimes.com/subscription?campaignId=89WYR&redirect_uri=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2024%2F04%2F12%2Fus%2Fpolitics%2Fkamala-harris-arizona-abortion-trump.html) for all of The Times. Thank you for your patience while we verify access. Already a subscriber? [Log in](https://myaccount.nytimes.com/auth/login?response_type=cookie&client_id=vi&redirect_uri=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2024%2F04%2F12%2Fus%2Fpolitics%2Fkamala-harris-arizona-abortion-trump.html&asset=opttrunc). Want all of The Times? [Subscribe](https://www.nytimes.com/subscription?campaignId=89WYR&redirect_uri=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2024%2F04%2F12%2Fus%2Fpolitics%2Fkamala-harris-arizona-abortion-trump.html).
  • Three years ago this month, Vice President Kamala Harris moved into her official residence in northwest Washington, a quiet 73-acre enclave where the U.S. Navy keeps an observatory as well as the nation’s master clock. Early in her stay she saw evidence of digging near her house, and after asking around, learned that an archaeological team had recently found part of a foundation of an Italianate villa, known as North View, that had been there more than a century and a half before. Near the villa, the team had found something else: A brick foundation of a smokehouse used to cure meat. Ms. Harris did not have to be told who had used it. Well before moving to the new residence, the nation’s first Black vice president had been told by aides about the 34 individuals who once lived on the property against their will. A [subsequent opinion essay](https://rollcall.com/2021/02/23/where-slaves-once-toiled-vice-president-kamala-harris-will-soon-call-home/) for CQ Roll Call was the first mention of it in the news media. The names of the enslaved people were recorded in a document of the era. Peter, Mary and Ellen Jenkins. Chapman, Sarah, Henry, Joseph, Louisa, Daniel and Eliza Toyer. Towley, Jane, Resin, Samuel, Judah and Andrew Yates. Kitty, William, Gilbert and Phillip Silas. Susan, Dennis, Ann Maria and William Carroll. Becky, Milly, Margaret and Mortimer Briscoe. Richard Williams. Mary Young. John Thomas. Mary Brown. John Chapman. William Cyrus. They ranged in age from four months to 65 years, and in skill from winemaking to carpentry. Five of them would go off to the Civil War as Union soldiers. Another would flee at age 13, destination unknown. For those who remained on a property that was known at the time as Pretty Prospects, the abject conditions of their lives are hinted at in documents now preserved at the National Archives. Navy engineers discovered the foundation of a smokehouse at the Naval Observatory in 2020.Credit...Matthew Stinson/Naval Facilities Engineering Systems Command Washington Aides said Ms. Harris inquired about the history of the property and the enslaved people there.Credit...Matthew Stinson/Naval Facilities Engineering Systems Command Washington Thank you for your patience while we verify access. If you are in Reader mode please exit and [log into](https://myaccount.nytimes.com/auth/login?response_type=cookie&client_id=vi&redirect_uri=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2024%2F04%2F12%2Fus%2Fpolitics%2Fkamala-harris-slavery.html&asset=opttrunc) your Times account, or [subscribe](https://www.nytimes.com/subscription?campaignId=89WYR&redirect_uri=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2024%2F04%2F12%2Fus%2Fpolitics%2Fkamala-harris-slavery.html) for all of The Times. Thank you for your patience while we verify access. Already a subscriber? [Log in](https://myaccount.nytimes.com/auth/login?response_type=cookie&client_id=vi&redirect_uri=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2024%2F04%2F12%2Fus%2Fpolitics%2Fkamala-harris-slavery.html&asset=opttrunc). Want all of The Times? [Subscribe](https://www.nytimes.com/subscription?campaignId=89WYR&redirect_uri=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2024%2F04%2F12%2Fus%2Fpolitics%2Fkamala-harris-slavery.html).
  • ![US Vice President Kamala Harris speaks on reproductive freedom at El Rio Neighborhood Center in Tucson, Arizona, on April 12, 2024](https://ichef.bbci.co.uk/news/976/cpsprodpb/FC3D/production/_133137546_gettyimages-2147754777.jpg)Image source, Getty Images Image caption, Democrats are working to tie strict abortion bans to Donald Trump **Vice-President Kamala Harris lambasted Donald Trump over abortion restrictions as she held a campaign rally in Tucson, Arizona on Friday.** The state was pushed to the front of the US abortion battle this week after the state's Supreme Court upheld a 1864 law banning almost all abortions. "Donald Trump did this," Ms Harris said. Her remarks added to recent attacks from the Biden campaign tying Mr Trump to abortion bans nationwide. Mr Trump campaigned in 2016 on appointing justices who would overturn Roe v Wade. He put three conservatives on the court, all of whom voted to overturn Roe in June 2022 and rescinded the nationwide right to abortion. An estimated 18 million women of reproductive age now do not have access to the procedure in their state of residence, [according to the pro-choice research group the Guttmacher Institute](https://www.guttmacher.org/2023/12/state-policy-trends-2023-first-full-year-roe-fell-tumultuous-year-abortion-and-other). "We all must understand who is to blame," Ms Harris said on Friday. "Donald Trump is the architect of this healthcare crisis." She claimed that "a second Trump term would be even worse... he will sign a national abortion ban." A spokesman for the Trump campaign denied supporting a national ban, saying he "could not have been more clear. These are decisions for people of each state to make". Arizona's 160-year-old law has given Ms Harris and her fellow Democrats another chance to focus their 2024 election efforts on abortion, a strategy that has proven effective in local and state races. Mr Trump has sought to distance himself from Arizona's ban, calling on state politicians to repeal the law. Speaking from his West Palm Beach residence on Friday afternoon, Mr Trump said the 1864 law was "going to be changed by the government". But he also took credit for "breaking" Roe. "We did something that nobody thought was possible, we gave it back to the states, and the states are working very brilliantly," he said. "It's working the way it's supposed to," he said. Kari Lake, the presumptive Republican nominee for an open Arizona Senate seat and a close ally of Mr Trump, has also publicly renounced the law, and on Thursday called the ban "out of line" with state voters. Ms Lake previously praised the ban, calling it a "great law". It is still unclear when and how the 1864 ban will be enforced. The Arizona Supreme Court put the ruling on hold for at least 14 days while a lower court considered added arguments about the law's constitutionality. The state's Democrat attorney general, Kris Mayes, has said she would not prosecute anyone performing or obtaining abortions. Initial attempts by Democrats to repeal the law in the state legislature were thwarted by senior Republicans. Arizona's voters may also have a chance to reverse the law themselves with a likely ballot initiative that, if passed in November, would protect abortion rights until 24 weeks of pregnancy. Pro-choice activists in the state say they have already met the signature threshold required to put the question to voters this autumn. Media caption, Hear from Arizonans on both sides of the abortion debate * [Abortion](/news/topics/c207p54m45dt) * [Kamala Harris](/news/topics/c34k011x7rrt) * [Donald Trump](/news/topics/cp7r8vgl2lgt) * [US abortion debate](/news/topics/cvj0q32px61t) * [United States](/news/topics/cx1m7zg01xyt) * [Arizona](/news/topics/cx1m7zg0wm7t)
  • Remember Kamala Harris? Just a few years ago the [first female vice-president](https://www.vogue.com/article/kamala-harris-vogue-cover-backdrop-meaning-alpha-kappa-alpha) of the US was surrounded by fanfare, splashed on the cover of Vogue and being feted as the future of the Democratic party. For a brief moment, it seemed plausible that Joe Biden, the oldest inaugurated president in history, might serve just a single term and then gracefully hand the reins over to his VP. “Ms Harris now finds herself the most clearly positioned heir to the White House,” [the New York Times](https://www.nytimes.com/2020/11/07/us/politics/kamala-harris.html) mused after the 2020 election. Four years on and Harris’s position is a lot less clear. Indeed, you could be forgiven for forgetting that the vice-president even exists. And, to be fair, that’s because part of her job is ensuring she doesn’t steal the spotlight from her boss. Very few vice-presidents shine in the role; there is a reason Teddy Roosevelt [once opined](https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2014/10/03/a-brief-history-of-vice-presidents-bemoaning-the-vice-presidency/) that the position “is not a stepping stone to anything except oblivion”. Biden, of course, was an exception to that. Still, he jokingly complained that being number two was “[a bitch](https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/white-house/vice-president-joe-bidens-foul-mouthed-quip-job-draws-laughs-n217386)” back in 2014, when he was VP. Even bearing in mind the inherent limitations of the position, however, Harris’s vice-presidency has been a damp squib. Not even Harris’s inner circle seem enthused by the 59-year-old: the early days of her vice-presidency were [plagued with headlines](https://www.cnn.com/2021/07/02/politics/kamala-harris-office-dynamics/index.html) about dysfunction and infighting in her office. Harris may have had a trailblazing career, but few people seem to take her seriously – not even allies dependent on US government aid. A [recent report](https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/2024/04/15/ukraine-russia-oil-refinery-attacks/) by the Washington Post, for example, suggests that the Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy was irritated when Harris recently asked him to stop attacking oil refineries in Russia, and [proceeded to ignore her](https://archive.is/jb3uO) because he wasn’t sure she (the vice-president!) actually reflected the Biden administration’s views. The bad press has been accompanied by even worse polls. Indeed, an NBC News poll [from last June](https://www.nbcnews.com/meet-the-press/first-read/desantis-gop-support-declining-new-nbc-poll-rcna91102) found Harris had the lowest net-negative rating for any vice-president in the survey’s history – 49% had a negative view while 32% had a positive view. With the election drawing closer, the situation [hasn’t much improved](https://www.newsweek.com/kamala-harris-approval-rating-voices-grow-joe-biden-replacement-1871164). And while Harris [has insisted](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2023/sep/10/kamala-harris-joe-biden-2024-election) she is prepared to serve as president “if necessary”, she is not widely seen as a shoo-in in the unlikely case that the Democrats replace Biden as the 2024 nominee. Rather, the California governor, Gavin Newsom, and [Michelle Obama](https://www.the-independent.com/news/world/americas/us-politics/michelle-obama-presidential-election-joe-biden-b2503755.html) have been floated as more electable replacements. So what went so terribly wrong? How did Harris go from being a rising star to something of an embarrassment? Racism and misogyny obviously play some part. Trump has referred to Harris as “[this monster](https://www.npr.org/2020/10/09/921884531/trump-calls-harris-a-monster-reviving-a-pattern-of-attacking-women-of-color)” and the right have always been desperate to paint Harris in the most dehumanising light. It hasn’t helped, of course, that Biden gave Harris the impossible task of dealing with migration and border security, which put her even more firmly in the right’s firing line. Still, it would be disingenuous to say that bigotry is at the heart of Harris’s image problem. Yes, the right automatically see the worst in her – but a hell of a lot of people on the left have been desperate to see the best in her. You did not have to be a Harris fangirl (and many progressives, alienated by her record as a prosecutor, were not) to want to see the first female vice-president, the first woman of colour vice-president, succeed. Now, however, as one of the faces of Biden’s heartless policy towards Gaza, she has alienated many of the people who thought she represented a more inclusive future. “Can we really celebrate Black women in power who can’t use said power to prevent death and starvation inflicted on a stateless people?” the Washington Post columnist Karen Attiah [wrote last month](https://archive.is/z88Bw#selection-1655.0-1655.192). “I – like an increasing number of voters – don’t think so.” Ultimately, however, the problem with Harris isn’t so much her stance on Gaza so much as the fact that she doesn’t seem to have a genuine stance on anything. Throughout her career, Harris has been characterised by what the New York Times called a “[lack of ideological rigidity](https://www.nytimes.com/2020/11/07/us/politics/kamala-harris.html)”. Which is a polite way of saying she seems to believe in little except her own advancement. It’s been a successful strategy so far, but it may have finally come to an end. Arwa Mahdawi is a Guardian columnist * _**Do you have an opinion on the issues raised in this article? If you would like to submit a response of up to 300 words by email to be considered for publication in our [letters](https://www.theguardian.com/tone/letters) section, please [click here](mailto:[email protected]?body=Please%20include%20your%20name,%20full%20postal%20address%20and%20phone%20number%20with%20your%20letter%20below.%20Letters%20are%20usually%20published%20with%20the%20author%27s%20name%20and%20city/town/village.%20The%20rest%20of%20the%20information%20is%20for%20verification%20only%20and%20to%20contact%20you%20where%20necessary.).**_
  • One of Kamala Harris’s most memorable moments during the 2020 presidential election cycle was when, during a Democratic primary debate, she sharply criticized Joe Biden for [working with](https://www.nbcnews.com/news/nbcblk/joe-biden-didn-t-just-compromise-segregationists-he-fought-their-n1021626) segregationists in the Senate in their shared opposition to busing. She personalized her criticism, [saying](https://www.nytimes.com/2020/08/11/us/politics/kamala-harris-issues-policy-positions.html): “There was a little girl in California who was a part of the second class to integrate her public schools, and she was bused to school every day. And that little girl was me.” The power in the attack was not only the point being made but that she — a person affected from a group affected — was making it. Although some of Biden’s defenders saw her remark as a gratuitous broadside, there was an authenticity to the way she confronted the issue. The verbal jab also aligned with the national zeitgeist at a time when calls for racial justice and the Black Lives Matter movement were ascendant. She ticked up in the polls, and donations poured in. Ultimately, her candidacy didn’t catch fire, but the following summer, Biden, the eventual nominee, made a historic offer to Harris to join his ticket, leading to her becoming the first woman, first Black person and first Asian American to be vice president. Fast-forward to now, when Vice President Harris has served nearly a full term alongside President Biden, and she is moving into another moment when the political stars are aligned for her as the perfect messenger on a subject that has fixed Americans’ attention and is central in the 2024 presidential campaign: reproductive rights. Thank you for your patience while we verify access. If you are in Reader mode please exit and [log into](https://myaccount.nytimes.com/auth/login?response_type=cookie&client_id=vi&redirect_uri=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2024%2F04%2F17%2Fopinion%2Fkamala-harris-reproductive-rights.html&asset=opttrunc) your Times account, or [subscribe](https://www.nytimes.com/subscription?campaignId=89WYR&redirect_uri=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2024%2F04%2F17%2Fopinion%2Fkamala-harris-reproductive-rights.html) for all of The Times. Thank you for your patience while we verify access. Already a subscriber? [Log in](https://myaccount.nytimes.com/auth/login?response_type=cookie&client_id=vi&redirect_uri=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2024%2F04%2F17%2Fopinion%2Fkamala-harris-reproductive-rights.html&asset=opttrunc). Want all of The Times? [Subscribe](https://www.nytimes.com/subscription?campaignId=89WYR&redirect_uri=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2024%2F04%2F17%2Fopinion%2Fkamala-harris-reproductive-rights.html).
  • Vice President Kamala Harris made a new effort to energize Black voters in battleground states on Monday, visiting Atlanta for the kickoff of a national economic tour that will highlight how the Biden administration says its policies are helping a constituency that will be vital to Democrats’ success in November. Speaking to a largely Black crowd of about 400 people, Ms. Harris laid out ways that she and President Biden have sought to improve Black Americans’ upward mobility and help them realize their business ambitions. A chief objective of the tour, she said, was to let Black business owners and entrepreneurs know about the resources available to them. “I need the help of the leaders who are here to get the word out so people know what is available to them,” she said during a conversation at the Georgia International Convention Center with Rashad Bilal and Troy Millings of the financial literacy podcast “Earn Your Leisure,” which offers business advice to its more than two million listeners, a majority of whom are Black. Explaining how government policies have widened the racial wealth gap over the years, Ms. Harris pointed to the Biden administration’s attempts to try to narrow it, including small-business grants and efforts to forgive student loans. “We want to make sure people know about it — and then know where they can receive — the support to be ready to take on the work and then to grow their capacity,” she said. Her remarks at the official White House-hosted event — drier and less political than her forceful campaign speeches on abortion recently — meandered at times. Thank you for your patience while we verify access. If you are in Reader mode please exit and [log into](https://myaccount.nytimes.com/auth/login?response_type=cookie&client_id=vi&redirect_uri=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2024%2F04%2F29%2Fus%2Fpolitics%2Fkamala-harris-atlanta.html&asset=opttrunc) your Times account, or [subscribe](https://www.nytimes.com/subscription?campaignId=89WYR&redirect_uri=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2024%2F04%2F29%2Fus%2Fpolitics%2Fkamala-harris-atlanta.html) for all of The Times. Thank you for your patience while we verify access. Already a subscriber? [Log in](https://myaccount.nytimes.com/auth/login?response_type=cookie&client_id=vi&redirect_uri=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2024%2F04%2F29%2Fus%2Fpolitics%2Fkamala-harris-atlanta.html&asset=opttrunc). Want all of The Times? [Subscribe](https://www.nytimes.com/subscription?campaignId=89WYR&redirect_uri=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2024%2F04%2F29%2Fus%2Fpolitics%2Fkamala-harris-atlanta.html).
  • Kamala Harris once again visited Atlanta to tout investments made by the Biden administration in minority and underserved communities, highlighting $158m in infrastructure spending on a project to build a cap over Atlanta’s most traveled highway, the Downtown Connector. The vice-president’s appearance is the continuation of a full court press in Georgia to solidify support among [Democrats](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/democrats) – and specifically Black Democrats – for the administration. Harris has visited [Atlanta](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/atlanta) repeatedly since winning office, acting as one of the administration’s primary surrogates to the Black community, keenly aware that Georgia remains in play and that perceptions of flagging support among African American voters could be the difference between a win and a loss. [ How did Kamala Harris go from being a rising star to a damp squib? ](https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2024/apr/16/how-did-kamala-harris-go-from-being-a-rising-star-to-a-damp-squib) Harris kicked off a nationwide tour discussing economic opportunities for minority voters with this visit, she said. The Atlanta project, which local planners call the Stitch, would build parkland and mixed-use buildings including affordable housing and is meant to address the intentional destruction of Black communities by highway construction in the 60s, Harris said. “There was this whole policy push called urban renewal,” Harris said. “It was supposed to be about making life easier for people … but essentially it was about making it easier for folks who had wealth and means to move to the suburbs and still have access to downtown. It ended up decimating these communities for years.” Harris said the Stitch project would create an estimated 13,000 jobs and help reconnect a community bifurcated by the highway. Harris spoke on Monday at the [Georgia](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/state-of-georgia) International convention center near Atlanta’s airport in a conversation moderated by Rashad Bilal and Troy Millings, hosts of the financial podcast Earn Your Leisure. She emphasized the work the Biden administration has been doing to expand access to capital for communities of color. Black entrepreneurs do not have access to the capital needed to launch capital-intensive companies, Bilal said. “Especially when we look at the next generation of unicorn companies – billion-dollar companies – they’re tech companies,” Bilal said. That access is often about relationships that Black business owners often do not have. But federal spending can provide a base from which a business can grow and ultimately build those relationships, Harris said. Home ownership is also critical for building intergenerational wealth and entrepreneurial opportunities, as a source of equity for startups. “To achieve true equality, we must have an economic agenda,” Harris said. “That agenda must mean speaking to people’s economic ambitions.” Harris’s message sharply contrasts with increasing rhetoric from Republicans decrying diversity, equity and inclusion programs. “In spite of those who want to attack DEI, you can’t truly invest in the strength of our nation if you don’t pay attention to diversity, equity and inclusion.” Among other programs and spending made by the federal government since 2021, Harris presented the Stitch as an example of what the Biden administration has accomplished. After federal courts struck down zoning laws that segregated housing, federal legislators responded with the Federal-Aid Highway Act of 1956. Massive highway projects like Atlanta’s Downtown Connector were deliberately driven through Black neighborhoods in the name of “urban renewal”. In Atlanta’s case, the connector – which brings I-75 and I-85 together – displaced residents and businesses around Auburn Avenue, which was the heart of Atlanta’s Black middle class. [skip past newsletter promotion](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2024/apr/29/kamala-harris-atlanta-biden-investment-minority-communities#EmailSignup-skip-link-14) Sign up to First Thing Our US morning briefing breaks down the key stories of the day, telling you what’s happening and why it matters **Privacy Notice:** Newsletters may contain info about charities, online ads, and content funded by outside parties. For more information see our [Privacy Policy](https://www.theguardian.com/help/privacy-policy). We use Google reCaptcha to protect our website and the Google [Privacy Policy](https://policies.google.com/privacy) and [Terms of Service](https://policies.google.com/terms) apply. after newsletter promotion Martin Luther King Jr grew up a five-minute walk from where the connector splits the city today, a massive highway with more than 300,000 cars passing through every day. Similarly, the construction of I-20 decimated the Summerhill neighborhood, once home to many of Atlanta’s Black doctors. Summerhill has only recently recovered its economic vibrancy. But even as much of the rest of Atlanta experiences gentrification, the area around Auburn Avenue is poor. The representative Nikema Williams and the senators Raphael Warnock and Jon Ossoff addressed attendees briefly before the main event, each extolling the virtues of infrastructure investments in Georgia from the infrastructure bill. The Stitch received outsized attention by all three in their remarks. Williams is in her sophomore term as a congresswoman representing much of Atlanta, and sits on the House transportation committee. She and Warnock worked closely together to draw funding on the Stitch project, which eight years ago was little more than a twinkle in the eye of AJ Robinson, president of Central Atlanta Progress, a non-profit civic group for downtown businesses which is leading the design process on the Stitch. “We are truly a model for the world,” Williams said, describing the investments by the Biden administration in the Black community as “unprecedented”. Warnock has a particularly high political stake in the Stitch. The cap stands to transform the area around Auburn Avenue, famed home of Martin Luther King Jr and Ebenezer Baptist church, where Warnock is now senior pastor. The church is two blocks east of the Connector, which decimated the once-vibrant street after its construction about 60 years ago. “Let’s be very clear, today is a day of celebration,” Warnock said. “Because at last, we start repairing and revitalizing and reconnecting neighborhoods in the heart of the Black neighborhoods that have been historically torn apart by highway construction … This happens in every community in America.”
  • Twelve minutes into a health forum discussion for Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander organizations, [Kamala Harris](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/kamala-harris) on Monday offered a punchy piece of advice to younger members of the audience. “We have to know that sometimes people will open the door for you and leave it open,” the US vice-president [said](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AK66J1qfGog&t=1059s). “Sometimes they won’t, and then you need to kick that fucking door down.” Harris, who is out front for the Biden-Harris re-election campaign on women’s and reproductive rights, made the remarks at a leadership summit at which she also described how her parents had met at a civil rights march. Harris’s remark came as she was describing the importance of breaking down barriers and being the first to do it. “Here’s the thing about breaking down barriers. It does not mean that you start on one side of the barrier and end up on another,” she said. “There’s breaking involved. And when you break things you get cut and you may bleed. And it is worth it every time.” But while presidents and vice-presidents do not customarily use profanity, it is becoming more common, though often in private or leaked conversations. Joe Biden recently referred to rival Donald Trump as “a sick fuck”, and to the Israeli prime minister, [Benjamin Netanyahu](https://www.nbcnews.com/news/investigations/biden-disparages-netanyahu-private-hasnt-changed-us-policy-israel-rcna138282), as a “bad fucking guy” and an “asshole.” Harry Truman once explained his firing of the insubordinate but popular Gen Douglas MacArthur by saying, “I didn’t fire him because he was a dumb son of a bitch, although he was, but that’s not against the law for generals.” Lyndon Johnson swore so much that it would be impossible to document all of it, according to a recent essay [by the historian Tevi Troy in the City Journal](https://www.city-journal.org/article/obscenity-in-the-executive), including the lament: “I don’t know what the fuck to do about Vietnam.” According to the survey, US presidential cursing is common when referring to Netanyahu. In 1996, Bill Clinton once fumed, “Who’s the fucking leader of the free world?” Trump said “fuck him”, after Netanyahu acknowledged Biden’s election victory in 2020. [skip past newsletter promotion](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/article/2024/may/13/kamala-harris-talk-doors-down#EmailSignup-skip-link-9) Sign up to First Thing Our US morning briefing breaks down the key stories of the day, telling you what’s happening and why it matters **Privacy Notice:** Newsletters may contain info about charities, online ads, and content funded by outside parties. For more information see our [Privacy Policy](https://www.theguardian.com/help/privacy-policy). We use Google reCaptcha to protect our website and the Google [Privacy Policy](https://policies.google.com/privacy) and [Terms of Service](https://policies.google.com/terms) apply. after newsletter promotion But few of those were meant as calls to action, leaving Harris, as she said in her discussion, “breaking down barriers”.
  • Vice President Kamala Harris has announced the formation of a new partnership to help provide internet access to 80% of Africa by 2030, up from 40% now WASHINGTON -- Vice President Kamala Harris announced Friday the formation of a new partnership to help provide internet access to 80% of Africa by 2030, up from roughly 40% now. The announcement comes as follow-through on Harris' visit to the continent last year and in conjunction with this week's visit to Washington by Kenyan President William Ruto. Harris and the Kenyan leader had a public chat on Friday at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce about how public-private partnerships can increase economic growth. “Many could rightly argue that the future is on the continent of Africa,” said Harris, noting that the median age in Africa is 19, a sign of the potential for economic growth. “It is not about, and simply about aid, but about investment and understanding the capacity that exists.” Africa has struggled to obtain the capital needed to build up its industrial and technological sectors. The United Nations reported last year that foreign direct investment in the continent fell to $45 billion in 2022, from a record high $80 billion in 2021. Africa accounted for only 3.5% of foreign direct investment worldwide, even though it makes up roughly 18% of the global population. Besides launching the nonprofit Partnership for Digital Access in Africa, Harris announced an initiative geared toward giving 100 million African people and businesses in the agricultural sector access to the digital economy. The African Development Bank Group along with Mastercard, among other organizations, will help form the Mobilizing Access to the Digital Economy Alliance, or MADE. The alliance will start a pilot program to give digital access to 3 million farmers in Kenya, Tanzania and [Nigeria](https://abcnews.go.com/alerts/Nigeria), before expanding elsewhere. Harris, a Democrat and the first female U.S. vice president, also announced that the Women in the Digital Economy efforts to address the gender divide in technology access have now generated more than $1 billion in public and private commitments, with some federal commitments pending congressional approval. \_\_\_ Follow the AP's coverage of Vice President Kamala Harris at https://apnews.com/hub/kamala-harris.
  • 173988471 story [![The Internet](//a.fsdn.com/sd/topics/internet_64.png)](//tech.slashdot.org/index2.pl?fhfilter=internet) Posted by msmash on Monday May 27, 2024 @04:30PM from the up-next dept. Vice President Kamala Harris has announced the formation of a new partnership to [help provide internet access to 80% of Africa by 2030](https://apnews.com/article/kamala-harris-africa-kenya-internet-digital-partnership-572da5afead8c4a75b4164bd812bb582), up from roughly 40% now. From a report: _The announcement comes as follow-through on Harris' visit to the continent last year and in conjunction with this week's visit to Washington by Kenyan President William Ruto. Harris and the Kenyan leader had a public chat on Friday at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce about how public-private partnerships can increase economic growth. "Many could rightly argue that the future is on the continent of Africa," said Harris, noting that the median age in Africa is 19, a sign of the potential for economic growth. "It is not about, and simply about aid, but about investment and understanding the capacity that exists." Africa has struggled to obtain the capital needed to build up its industrial and technological sectors._
  • [Donald Trump](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/donaldtrump) has assailed the validity of his conviction in the criminal case involving hush-money payments to an adult film actor because “cheaters don’t like getting caught,” Kamala Harris said during a speech on Saturday. “Simply put, Donald Trump thinks he is above the law,” the [vice-president](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/kamala-harris) told an audience at a dinner hosted by the Michigan state Democratic party. “This should be disqualifying for anyone who wants to be president of the United States.” Harris’s remarks in Detroit about the presumptive Republican nominee for November’s presidential election came after the former president has repeatedly disparaged the New York state judge who oversaw the trial culminating in Trump’s being found guilty on 30 May. [ Joe Biden’s exquisite Trump verdict dilemma ](https://www.theguardian.com/global/article/2024/jun/05/joe-biden-exquisite-trump-verdict-dilemma) Trump has tried to persuade the electorate into believing that the judge, [Juan Merchan](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/article/2024/jun/08/trump-trial-judge-juan-merchan-prison-sentence-threats), is unfair and somehow conspiring with the Joe Biden White House to which Harris belongs, even though it was state-level prosecutors – not federal ones – who brought the recently concluded case against him. Trump’s rhetoric that his criminal trial in New York was “rigged” echoed his supporters’ justification for their attack on the US Capitol on 6 January 2021, a desperate but failed attempt to keep him in power after his electoral defeat to Biden weeks earlier, Harris suggested on Saturday. She also alluded to how Trump and his allies have openly boasted about exacting [retribution](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/article/2024/jun/02/trump-social-media-threats) against those who are perceived to have crossed the former president and some of his aides. “He suggests the case could be a ‘breaking point’ for his supporters, hinting at violence. He spreads lies that our administration is controlling this case when everyone knows it was a state prosecution. And he says that he will use a second term for revenge,” Harris said. “You know why he complains? Because the reality is cheaters don’t like getting caught.” While there was a generally friendly audience for her comments about Trump on Saturday, she was heckled by a pro-Palestinian protester demonstrating against the Biden administration’s response to Israel’s ongoing military strikes on Gaza. Officials quickly removed the heckler as the vice-president said, “I value and respect your voice – but I’m speaking right now,” the local television station WJBK reported. That encounter wasn’t the only time over the weekend that Biden’s administration was reminded of public dissatisfaction with its handling of the war in Gaza, which the Israeli military launched in response to Hamas’s 7 October attack on Israel. Thousands of pro-Palestinian demonstrators gathered outside the White House on Saturday. Though footage posted to social media showed police using pepper spray on demonstrators, the Republican US senator Tom Cotton – a vocal, far-right critic of the Biden administration – appeared on Sunday on Fox News and argued that the president goes too easy on such protests. “Joe Biden thinks that these pro-Hamas, anti-American lunatics should be guiding American policy towards Israel,” Cotton said. Harris took aim at Trump on Saturday as the former president and Biden are essentially tied nationally as well as in key battleground states, at least according to a new poll by [CBS News](https://www.cbsnews.com/news/poll-trump-biden-neck-and-neck-06-09-2024/). That stalemate exists even after Trump’s conviction on 34 counts of falsifying business records related to hush-money payments delivered to Stormy Daniels, the adult entertainer who has alleged an extramarital sexual encounter with the Republican before he successfully ran for the Oval Office. He still faces 54 other pending criminal charges accusing him of 2020 election interference as well as improper retention of classified materials after his presidency, allegations contained in two federal prosecutions and one state case in Georgia. In civil court, Trump has been grappling with multimillion-dollar penalties for business practices deemed fraudulent as well as a rape accusation that a judge has determined to be substantially true. Republicans, meanwhile, have sought to embarrass Biden over the fact that his son, Hunter, had spent the previous several days standing trial on federal gun charges in Delaware.